There are a thousand reasons why you might want to reset your iPad and return it to the way it was before you bought it. It’s not unusual for an iPad to become stubbornly slow after a few short years of use and, for many people, starting afresh is the best thing to do.
Whether you’re looking to sell your iPad on to a new owner, or you’ve been a victim of theft and need to wipe your iPad from afar, resetting is a simple process.
However, before you reset your iPad, you’re going to want to back up your data to iCloud or iTunes, if you can.
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How to back up your iPad
Before you factory reset your iPad, it’s always a good idea to back up your data in iTunes or iCloud first. If you don’t, you’ll lose all your precious data, including your apps and your photos. The simplest way to ensure you still have everything on your iPad is to back up through iCloud.
On your iPad, connect to Wi-Fi, navigate to Settings | iCloud | iCloud Backup and tap Back Up Now. All of your data will then be stored on your current Apple ID, meaning you can retrieve it if you get a new device.
To check if your backup has been successful, go to Settings | iCloud | iCloud Storage and tap Manage Storage. This is where you’ll see the date and time of your last backup. If you can’t see it, it probably means that the backup has failed. You can either try it again – sometimes if the connection drops, it won’t work – or you can back up using iTunes.
Backing up using iTunes is just as easy. Open iTunes, connect your iPad to your computer and then click Back Up Now.
Now that you’re all backed up, here’s how to factory reset your iPad.
How to factory reset your iPad
Clearing all the data from your iPad is just as simple as backing it up, if not easier. Just make sure you have your Apple ID and password handy, or you won’t be able to complete the process.
- Go to Settings | General | Reset | Erase all Settings and Content.
- When the pop-up appears, tap Erase and enter your passcode, Apple ID and password when prompted.
- Your iPad will begin to erase any data stored on it, before rebooting and then restarting. Once rebooted, you can either leave it as is, or restore it from your most recent backup.
If you’ve lost your iPad or it’s been stolen, Apple allows you to factory reset your device remotely via iCloud or the Find My iPad app.
How to factory reset your iPad remotely
- Navigate to icloud.com/#find.
- Click “Find my iPhone”. It says iPhone, but the process will also work for your iPad or any other iCloud-connected iOS device.
- Enter your Apple ID.
- Choose your iPad from the All Devices list and click Erase iPad.
- All of the data on your lost or stolen iPad will now be erased.
On this page, you can also brick your iPad and leave a message to anyone who finds it.
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