Apple stops signing iOS 14.4.2, meaning it's iOS 14.5 or newer from now on

How to use widgets on your iPhone Home screen
How to use widgets on your iPhone Home screen (Image credit: Joseph Keller / iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple has stopped signing iOS 14.4.2.
  • Users must now install iOS 14.5 or newer on their devices.

Apple has stopped signing iOS 14.4.2, meaning users can only install iOS 14.5 or newer from here on out. Apple released iOS 14.5.1 yesterday as it continues to build on the platform iOS 14 provided late last year.

The move to stop signing iOS 14.4.2 – as spotted by 9to5Mac – means that nobody can now install that particular version of Apple's iPhone software, even if they have the required file handy. It also means that iOS 14.5 is the oldest version of iOS that can be installed on iPhones from now on – software that was only released a week or so ago.

Apple often stops signing older versions of iOS as a security measure, particularly if a bug or flaw has been found that could allow a device to be compromised. It also takes similar steps if an older version of iOS has been jailbroken, too. The move to make iOS 14.5 the oldest version available does also ensure that as many people as possible are running a release with Apple's App Tracking Transparency (ATT) feature built in.

Both Instagram and Facebook are already worried about Apple's ATT feature – a sure sign it's probably a good move for users and their privacy!

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.