Apple officially releases new versions of iOS in the fall (usually September), but did you know there is a way to get the latest version on your iPhone or iPad months in advance? This is called the Apple Beta Software Program.
Apple’s beta program for iOS is completely free and open to anyone with a compatible device. It allows you to start using the next generation software before the public release. This means you can start using it 15 months before iOS is officially released!
Read on to find out what this program includes, if it’s right for you, and how to sign up.
What is Public Beta?
In software development, “beta” is the name given to a pre-release version of an application or operating system. The software is considered beta while in advanced development, but is not yet complete. The basics are present but the software is not ready for use by the general public as there is still some work to be done like fixing bugs, increasing speed and polishing the product.
Traditionally, beta software is only distributed within the company that developed it or to a trusted test team. Beta testers work with the software, looking for issues and bugs, and reporting to developers to help improve the product.
A public beta is a little different. Instead of limiting the beta tester group to internal staff or small groups, the software is generally available. This expands the amount of testing done, leading to better software.
What Are the Risks of the Public Beta?
While it’s exciting to receive new software months before it’s released, it’s important to understand that public betas aren’t for everyone. There are bugs in the betas. This means that beta software may crash frequently, features and apps may not work properly, and data may be lost.
It is also difficult to revert to the previous version after the beta software is installed. To uninstall the beta version, you should be comfortable with factory resetting your phone, restoring from backup and other maintenance tasks.
When you install beta software, the tradeoff for early access is that not everything works normally. If this is too risky for you – and for many people, especially those who rely on their iPhone for work – wait for the official release.
How to Sign Up for the iOS Public Beta
If you want to get iOS 16 early, sign up for the Apple Beta Software Program by following these steps:
1-Open Safari and visit the Apple Beta Software Program webpage.
3-Sign in with your Apple ID.
4-Go to the Getting Started section, tap on Register your iOS device.
5-Follow the instructions to create and archive a backup of your iPhone in its current state.
6-Tap Download profile in Step 2 of Apple’s instructions page.
7-In the popup, tap Allow to download a configuration profile.
8-Tap Close on the download checkbox.
-Wait while your device downloads and installs the update. It will reboot once more to complete the installation. The last time it reboots, you’ll be running the latest beta of iOS.