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Top 3 Ways to Recover PDF Files on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch

September 12, 2018 9:05 am / Posted by Andrew Coffe to Tips
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"I lost all my PDF files stored in iBooks when upgrading iPad to iOS 12. Have backed up to iTunes on my computer but can't find it. Not on the iCloud as far as I know. How to recover the lost PDF on iPad?"

Lost PDFs on your iOS device? If you are looking for PDF recovery for iPad, iPhone or iPod, this content is exactly what you need. You will learn why the e-Book PDF files in iBooks are lost, and 3 workable methods to restore PDF files from iPad, iPhone and iPod touch.

Note: There are few introductions on the Internet to tell you how to successfully recover a PDF from Apple iDevices. We sum up the methods from users reports that are mostly workable. Try any of them until you succeed.

All the methods apply to iPhone X/8/7/SE/6s/6s Plus/6/6 Plus/5S/5C/5/4s/4, 12.9-inch iPad Pro, 10.5-inch iPad Pro, iPad, iPad Air/mini 4/mini 3/mini 2/mini/4/3/2/1, iPod touch 5/4.

Why PDF Files Are Lost on Your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch

Data loss on iPhone or other devices happens frequently, and mostly the PDF files (including the non-iBooks Store book) are lost due to the following reasons:

  • You accidently deleted iBook data or the PDF files.
  • iOS upgrade, such as the latest iOS 12 or iOS 11/10.3.2/10/9/8/7 update, erased PDF from your device.
  • Factory settings restore wiped off all contents including PDF files.
  • Syncing with iTunes deleted files, and ebooks on iBooks disappeared.
  • PDFs are missing when transferring to computer.
  • Other reasons like jailbreak, damage (such as water damage), files corruption could also cause PDF in iBooks app lost.
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Method 1 to Find Back PDF on Your iDevice

restore pdf in ibooks

There is a shortcut you can try to find your missing PDF files, and some users reported that it works for them.

Method 2 to Recover Deleted PDF from iPad/iPhone/iPod

If you have turned on Sync Collections, you can find lost PDF on another iDevice. For example, if you lost PDF in iBooks on your iPhone, you can find back the same PDF files on your iPad.

This is because the Sync Collections makes the iBooks keep your PDFs (and non-iBooks Store books) in the same collections across all your iOS devices and Mac. Like if you have the same PDF on all your devices, when you move the PDF to your Sci-Fi collection in iBooks on your iPhone, that PDF will appear in your Sci-Fi collection the next time you open iBooks on your iPad. And if you delete a copy of PDF from iPhone, it will still be on your iPhone.

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Method 3 to Restore Missing PDF in iBooks from iOS Device

Recovering data is always a very important thing you should do. We have dedicated a hot article to show you: Top 5 Options to Sync iBooks Between iPhone/iPad and Mac. You can choose to sync iBooks between different devices.

UltData is quite a helpful tool for you to recover deleted/lost data. If you have a backup file, you can recover PDF from iTunes/iCloud backup with this program. If you don't have a backup file, you are able to restore missing PDF files from device by using this software. The easy guides are as below.

  • 1. Run UltData on a computer, and connect your device (an iPhone, iPad or iPod touch) which lost PDFs to the computer.
  • 2. After the app detects your device, click on "iBook" from the "Existing data on the iDevice".
  • 3. Click on "Start Scan" and choose the PDF file to restore from.
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Top 3 Ways to Recover PDF Files on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch