iOS 15.2 enables locked iPhone reset without a computer

Iphone 12 Pro Ios 15 Work Focus
Iphone 12 Pro Ios 15 Work Focus (Image credit: Christine Romero-Chan / iMore)

What you need to know

  • With iOS 15 you can now erase a locked iPhone without a computer.
  • A new feature in the latest update lets users erase their iPhone, iPad, or iPod without connecting it to a computer.
  • You'll need the Apple ID linked to the device and an internet connection.

A new security feature in iOS 15 will let users erase a locked iPhone, iPod, or iPad without connecting it to a computer, as was previously the case.

As noted by 9to5Mac Apple has confirmed (opens in new tab) in a new support document that with iOS 15.2 you can now erase any of these devices with just an internet connection.

Previously a locked iPhone that needed to be erased (if you'd forgotten the password, for example) had to be connected to a computer in order to allow it to be erased and then reset. Now, if you enter your passcode incorrectly enough times a new 'Erase [Device]' option will appear in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen.

Tapping this will prompt you to enter the Apple ID and password associated with the device. When entered correctly you'll be able to fully delete all the data and settings on the device and then restore it from a backup, setting a new passcode in the process.

Apple released iOS 15.2 to the general public on December 13, bringing with it Apple's new App Privacy Report, the Apple Music Voice Plan, and Apple's new Communication Safety feature for young children in Messages. The latter uses machine learning to detect when a young child might be about to send or receive an explicit image, warning them beforehand that it could be sensitive and that they don't have to open the image if they don't want to.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9