Top iPad Data Recovery Software for Mac and Windows (Free and Paid)

Losing your personal data is an awful experience and must’ve happened with everyone once in a lifetime. Whether it may be with your computer or your iPad, losing data is expected. So have you lost your data on your iPad? Did the OS crash? Did you screw something up while updating to the latest OS? or did you drop it in water? Well, whatever the reasons may be, fortunately for you, it’s still possible to recover most of these accidentally deleted or inaccessible files from your iPad, and we’re going to take a look a how can you do so. The most effective data recovery method is only accessible through using reliable data recovery software, which can get the fragmented data back and recover it without any errors.

A proper data recovery tool or software cannot be easily looked over or over-emphasized, and you need to have a great selection that can help you recover your data. You must have found some ads on the internet claiming to have a software that can recover all your lost iPad files. But that’s wishful thinking; no program can do that, and delivering on such a claim is basically scamming people? However, there are some tools that can get most of your data back, and we’re here with some of them that offer a great user experience and the best value for your money, time and precious data.

[ Related: How to Fix a Frozen iPad – Everything You Need to Know ]

The iPad Data recovery myth: what you can and cannot recover

Before we proceed with the whole recovery process, let us get some basic ground rules set so that you’re expecting only what is possible and don’t expect anything that isn’t at all possible. Recovery companies and software tend to overhype stuff leading to some real disappointments. So, keep your expectations grounded and here are some fundamental myths about data recovery that you should be aware of:

Too long didn’t read (TLDR) – You can use software data recovery tools to get back recently deleted or corrupted data, but if you have an iPad that’s not working or have hardware issues, then you should look at other repair and hardware recovery services.

The “Water Damaged” iPads

We must all have experienced and seen the dreadful day that you accidentally spill water or some other beverage all over your iPad. This is a tough case for recovery, and all your data from your water-damaged iPad can get deleted. But is there any way to get any kind of data back?

User Expectation – The expectation that a tool can somehow magically extract all your data from a water damaged iPad is common. However, that is not true, and you’re out of luck as any software data recovery tool can never recover all the data as the hardware memory chips might be damaged from the water.

Reality – However, absurd expectations are going to let you down and, and it is incredibly accurate with water damaged iPads. If your iPad still turns on and has some lost data, you could probably get that back, but if it doesn’t boot, your device must be water damaged, and any data recovery might not even be possible. So, keep your expectations grounded and expect only the least, not to be disappointed.

The “Broken” iPads

This is another common situation that most users face. They accidentally drop their iPads or break them somehow and expect that they can get their data back by replacing the screen or body. This is primarily true. You can get your data back if the screen and body are damaged and the iPad is still bootable. Then a software or hardware recovery service can extract all that information. Still, if your iPad isn’t at all bootable and is in terrible shape and condition, then data recovery has a meagre chance and can sometimes even result in nothing.

User expectations – The expectation of using a software tool to get all your data back from a broken iPad is basically high thinking. You have a better chance of recovery through a hardware service than a software one. However, if you expect anything to happen if you don’t have a bootable iPad, then you’re leading yourself to some real disappointment.

Reality – Assuming that you can get your iPad to boot somehow and have a chance at unlocking your screen, then you can recover a lot of data, but if that’s not the case, the only option you have remaining is to get your iPad repaired from a hardware repair centre and have them recover the memory chips that houses all your data. This will give you a shot at getting some of your data back, but anything more is wishful thinking.

The “Accidental Deleted Data” iPads

Let’s say you deleted something accidentally, and your iPad is functioning correctly without any issues, then the software recovery services have the best shot at recovering the lost data. This process will help you get all your data back and is the prime example of what you should be expecting from a data recovery service.

User expectations – You can expect to recover all your deleted data back if you have a functioning iPad without any external damage. It also is better if you just have some deleted or corrupted data on your storage and want to get it back asap. However, if you expect a software recovery service to extract data that you deleted months ago, you won’t be getting any data back. That information would’ve been already re-write on several times, leaving zero chance for recovery.

Reality – You can get most of the deleted data back and can expect a software recovery tool to extract the corrupted or deleted data back without any issues. You can follow and use the tools below to have a great chance at recovering your data.

So, with everything covered, let’s get on with a look at the tools that you can use to recover your data back. The list below houses the best data recovery tool choices that can help you out in a pinch.

Top choice: Tenorshare UltData

Pricing: Free and Premium – $60

UltData from Tenorshare has been highly rated by everyone in the data recovery community as the best software tool for data recovery. It fared well with our testing as well, and it helps you recover most of your deleted data faster than any other software tool out there. However, this incredible speed comes with some caveats, and it has an issue that can also recover some corrupt or not usable files. With our testing of deleting and recovering 10 files, the result was excellent, and all the recovered data is usable and accurate to what was lost. Here’s what you can expect from UltData:

  • Lost data recovery from the broken screen but usable iPads
  • Lost data from crashing issues from a failed update
  • Recovery of data from locked iPads
  • Data recovery from iPads with Jailbreak issues


Thenorshare UltData is compatible with both the OS from Windows and Apple. All the iPads and iPhones are also supported and don’t have any driver issues. You can also recover data from Apple devices and iPads, but getting them to work perfectly might be challenging.

Recovery Methods:

UltData comes equipped with multiple recovery processes. The first is the general recovery from a backup (iTunes). The second process is a restore from iCloud. Finally, the third uses a scan and recovery method from UltData that can be accessed by following the steps below to recover your data.

  1. Download and install UltData from the link here.
  2. Run the app and connect your iPad. Let the tool scan your iPad for any lost data and click on the “Restore” button.
  3. Let the process be completed, and you will have most of your data back.


  • Easy to use and has a clean UI
  • The scan and recovery process is fast
  • Can recover most deleted files


  • It might recover some corrupted data
  • It is an expensive price tag of $60

Most comprehensive: Dr.Fone

Pricing: $39.95 (in-app purchases for toolkits)

Dr.Fone is another feature-rich alternative data recovery tool that does a great job recovering most of the lost data from iPads. Our test with the iOS recovery toolkit functions was excellent, and the entire process was seamless and easy. Dr.Fone comes with a considerable amount of toolkits to download and work with. This helps keep the price down, and the one we’ll be using today is the iOS toolkit that is specifically made for iPads and iPhones.

The toolkit includes nine sub-mini tools, and we’re using the iOS Data Recovery tool today. It comes equipped with three powerful recovery modes that can help you get all your data back. The first is – “Scan Device” for deleted data. The second is “Extract and Recover iTunes backup”, and finally, the third is “Download iCloud Backup”. These sub-functions help you recover most lost data from your iPad from backups and the scanning process. Here are some of the best features that Dr. Fone comes equipped with:

  • Easy and reliable data recovery process
  • Lost data recovery from cracked screen iPads
  • Lost data recovery from updates and other crashes
  • Nine tools like iOS Phone Manager, Phone Transfer, System Repair, and many more.


Dr. Fone is compatible with most of the devices, but you would need to buy separate toolkits for different devices. It requires the iOS toolkit to work with iPhones and iPads, and it needs the Android toolkit to work with multiple Android phones. It works with Windows 10 and the latest macOS Big Sur variant.

Recovery Methods:

You can use a variety of recovery methods, but the most used process for the recovery of data is through the scan and recover method, and you can use this by:

  1. Firstly, download and install Dr.Fone from here.
  2. Connect your iPad and let the iOS Data Recovery Toolkit scan through your device.
  3. Now select all the data you want to recover and click on the “Recover” button.
  4. Let the recovery process be completed and check if all the files are working.


  • A minimal clean UI
  • The data recovery process is quite fast
  • Scan device and recovery feature is fantastic


  • The initial scan for the device can feel a lot slow
  • The app toolkits can be demanding and take up a lot of RAM

Paid competitions

iMyFone D-Back – helps you get your data back from your iPad. However, it does have some caveats and might recover some corrupted files as well, and the biggest problem we faced through our testing was the slow scan time. But, if you can get through it, the app is a great alternative and has a free version, and the best premium version will cost you $70 at most.

PhoneRescue – a decent iPad recovery software alternative that claims to recover most of the data lost from a damaged iPad. But to our testing, it wasn’t able to completely recover all of the files and had issues with file types such as movies and photos. However, this shouldn’t be of much concern if you have a backup somewhere or if you use a streaming service and the program is decently fast at recovering messages and notes.

Enigma Recovery – has a clean UI and a fast recovery scan process that can help you recover most of your data from an iPad. The overall experience is excellent, and you can also try it for free with a trial, but the overall cost of the app will be around 55 to 70 dollars.

Disk Drill iPad Data Recovery – probably the most affordable data recovery tool compared to all the paid competitions. The overall experience is great, and it has separate clean UI elements for all the data it scans from your iPad.

Free alternatives

iCloud / iTunesiCloud and iTunes work similarly and can backup and recover data. However, if you don’t have any data backed up beforehand, you’re out of luck, as the process can stop and recover no data at all. However, you can expect decent reliability and an impressive backup and restoring function for a free and inbuilt service from Apple.

EaseUS MobiSaver Free – As the name suggests, EaseUS is a data recovery tool developed to make recovering lost data from iPads easier and faster. The free version of the program efficiently handles various data losses from accidental deletion or syncing errors, and it has support for most of the iPad generations. However, it also has a premium version which enables all the features and allow you to have a better experience recovering data.

Minitool mobile recovery for iOS Free – a decent alternative for free recovery software that can help you get your data back. But, with some other options such as iCloud and EaseUS MobiSaver, the tool feels a little underpowered, but if none of the options works for you, you can use this instead.


Can you recover permanently deleted photos from an iPad?

Yes, you can recover permanently deleted photos from an iPad and get them back in your storage by using a backup from iCloud or iTunes. You can also use the data recovery tools linked above if you recently deleted the data and get back all your photos.

How do I recover files from an iPad without backup?

Most iPad files are stored and backed up on iCloud and can quickly be recovered from there, but if you don’t have a backup anywhere, you can use a third-party recovery software that can scan for deleted data and recover a lot of the missing files.

How can I recover data from my iCloud account?

You can recover data from an iCloud account by using the Sync process on your iPad or through using a desktop to go to the iCloud webpage, logging into your account and downloading backed up data straight to your device. This will enable you to make a copy of the files and be better prepared for any data loss in the future.

[ Further read: iPad Out of Storage Space? Tips and Apps to Clean iPad Memory ]

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