A large number of people in the jailbreak community were disappointed when Apple stopped signing iOS 11.3.1 last week. We know that the Electra jailbreak tool by CoolStar is on the horizon, and it supports only devices running iOS 11.3.1. People who have upgraded their devices to iOS 11.4 appear to be out of luck because they will no longer be able to downgrade to iOS 11.3.1. Fortunately, there is still a way to downgrade iOS 11.4 to iOS 11.3 if you are interested in trying out the beta version.
The iOS 11.4 update brings some cool new features such as Messages in iCloud, AirPlay 2, and HomePod stereo support besides bug fixes and performance improvements. But iPhone and iPad users interested in jailbreaking wouldn’t mind giving up on these features to liberate their devices. Apple historically stops signing older firmware versions after releasing newer ones to ensure that users have the latest update.
We had warned you even before Apple released iOS 11.4 that the company would stop signing iOS 11.3.1 anytime, and that you should save the SHSH 2 blobs for 11.3.1 when Apple was still signing it. People who followed our advice would be able to downgrade iOS 11.4 to iOS 11.3 using FutureRestore at their convenience. Potential jailbreakers who are still on iOS 11.3.1 should avoid upgrading to 11.4 because the Electra tool might not support it. The Electra tool is expected to arrive soon with Cydia Installer and Substitute support.
Downgrade iOS 11.4 to iOS 11.3 beta 5 & 6
If you have upgraded to 11.4 but haven’t saved the SHSH2 blobs, you have to take the beta route to downgrade iOS 11.4 to iOS 11.3. For some reason, Apple is still signing the iOS 11.3 beta 5 and beta 6. The Electra tool for iOS 11.3.1 jailbreak will also be compatible with the iOS 11.3 beta 5 and 6 firmware. So, you can download and install the public beta if you want to jailbreak your iPhone or iPad.
Beta firmware is often a bit risky because it may contain bugs and performance issues. But beta 5 and 6 are considered mature and stable with fewer bugs. It’s the first and second beta versions of a firmware that suffer from bugs. If anything goes wrong during the installation process, you could end up losing your data. So, consider taking a complete backup of your iPhone/iPad’s data via iCloud or iTunes before installing the beta 5 or beta 6 firmware.
This is probably the only way to downgrade iOS 11.4 to iOS 11.3 considering Apple has stopped signing the 11.3.1. It’s not the best and easiest solution out there, but it will bring you to a firmware supported by the Electra tool for jailbreaking.
Developer CoolStar has told fans that they were working on an updated version of Electra that would liberate devices running iOS 11.3.1. The Electra tool would be based on an exploit revealed by Project Zero developer Ian Beer. CoolStar said recently that they now had all the pieces needed to liberate the 11.3.1 devices. It was only a matter of tying them together to ensure that the Electra tool works as intended without any hiccups.
CoolStar will first bring a developer-facing release for people who have an Apple Developer account. Non-developers need not rush to sign up for a $99 Apple Developer account. They should wait for the public-facing version of Electra. The developer release would give CoolStar “a good head start” for the public jailbreak. CoolStar hasn’t given a timeline for the public-facing release, but we should expect it to arrive sooner rather than later.
A few days ago, developer Abraham Masri released the Houdini semi-jailbreak beta 3 to the public. The Houdini tool is capable of jailbreaking devices running up to iOS 11.3.1, but it has a lot of limitations. It doesn’t allow installation of Cydia or other packages that require Substitute or Substrate to be installed on an iOS device.