How to install Apple’s new beta software right now

ByFreda D. Cuevas

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Apple’s big WWDC 2022 keynote is now over and we can’t believe how many exciting new announcements were packed into the event. Of course, it goes without saying that the biggest news was iOS 16 and all the exciting new iPhone features Apple added to its mobile operating system. Needless to say, the #1 thought on everyone’s mind is to wonder when they can download the first iOS 16 beta release.

Some of Apple’s new iOS 16 features already leaked ahead of time. But those leaked barely scratched the surface. There are so many amazing new capabilities in iOS 16. So, it goes without saying that many iPhone users want to check out those new features as soon as possible.

It’s not just developers who get first dibs at the software and who will install iOS 16 beta 1 as soon as it’s available. Regular users can try it out, too. But when will Apple release the first iOS 16 beta so you can download it?

The answer is simple: You can download iOS 16 beta 1 right now!

iOS 16 beta 1 release date

iOS 16 adds new features to Apple’s iPhone. Image source: Apple

Apple usually releases the first iOS beta within a few hours after the main WWDC keynote. That means iOS 16 beta 1 was expected to be released on June 6th, soon after the press conference ends.

Thankfully, Apple followed its typical pattern. That means the first iOS 16 beta release is now available for download on compatible iPhones.

However, we’ll remind you that the first beta is not officially open to all iPhone users. That’s because the first iOS 16 beta will be an unstable version of iOS 16 that’s full of bugs. Only developers should install the first beta, and they’ll do it on development hardware rather than an iPhone they use all the time.

That said, people who get access to developer profiles will be able to try the iOS 16 beta 1 release as early as June 6th. As most of you already know, Apple’s iOS beta profiles are available to download for free on a bunch of sites around the web.

How to download and install iOS 16 beta 1

iOS 16 Beta Homescreen
iOS 16 Beta Homescreen Image source: Jonathan Geller, BGR

If you’ve installed the beta profile linked above, installing the first iOS 16 beta release couldn’t be easier. Here’s all you need to do:

  • First, back up your iPhone using iCloud or iTunes
  • Open the Settings app on your iPhone
  • Tap on General
  • Tap Software Update
  • Follow the on-screen instructions to install Apple’s iOS 16 beta

That’s it! You’ll see the first iOS 16 beta release listed there as an available update. Now, just follow the instructions on your iPhone screen to download and install it.

Once again, however, I’ll warn you that installing iOS 16 beta 1 on your main iPhone isn’t a very good idea. There will inevitably be tons of bugs and your battery life will suffer. Also, some of your favorite apps might not work at all. And lastly, there’s always a chance you could lose data.

Keep scrolling if you need to downgrade iOS 16 beta 1 to the latest iOS 15 version.

New iPhone features in iOS 16

iOS 16 Beta Wallpaper
iOS 16 Beta Wallpaper Image source: Jonathan Geller, BGR

Are you wondering whether or not the iOS 16 beta is worth installing on your iPhone? Well, the best way to decide is to read about all the new features that Apple added to iOS 16 beta 1.

One of the most exciting new features is the new lock screen in iOS 16. As I’m sure you’ve read, Apple now lets you add widgets that are similar to complications on the Apple Watch. You can see an example pictured above.

There are also tons of new iPhone features in Messages, the Health app, Apple Wallet, Apple Maps, and so much more.

If you want to see what else is new, check out our coverage of all the new iPhone features in iOS 16.

What about the iOS 16 public beta?

The first iOS 16 public beta should follow iOS 16 developer beta 1 in a few weeks. It would normally coincide with the iOS 16 beta 2 release for developers. This year, however, there’s talk that iOS 16 is still so buggy that the first public beta will be delayed a bit.

The public beta should be more stable than the previous versions, which means you’ll have fewer problems when running the iOS 16 public beta 1 on your main iPhone. 

Even still, bugs will be part of the experience. You might run into problems with some Apple apps or third-party apps. Battery life issues are also part of the iOS beta experience, so these are things to keep in mind if you plan to install the iOS 16 beta, even after its public release.

And as we mentioned, some rumors say that Apple apparently delayed the iOS 16 public beta release because the software is so buggy. According to Apple, the first iOS 16 public beta will be released sometime in July.

You’ll have to register for the iOS 16 public beta to get access to it. Apple has a handy portal that will let you register for public beta downloads.

It’s not just iOS 16 that’s coming out next week in beta form. Apple should also release the developer beta versions for iPadOS 16, tvOS 16, watchOS9, and macOS 13 after WWDC 2022. The public betas should come in the weeks that follow, just like iOS 16.

iOS 16 Undo Send feature in Messages.
iOS 16 Undo Send feature in Messages. Image source: Apple Inc.

What to expect from the next-gen iPhone software

A series of reports detailed some of the features that Apple built into iOS 16. The new software version might deliver changes to widgets, including a new lock screen with widget support. Some reports even mentioned interactive widgets.

Now, iOS 16 is official and you can read about all the new iOS 16 features coming to your iPhone.

iOS 16 adds audio and social networking features to Messages. Moreover, the Health app gets a big refresh. And of course one of the most exciting new features is lock screen widget support in iOS 16.

Additionally, iOS 16 will contain features that Apple won’t showcase until September when the final OS version is about to be released. Examples include always-on display support that might be coming to the iPhone 14 Pro models this year.

Mid-September is also when Apple will release the final iOS 16 version to all compatible devices. People who do not like testing beta releases will need to wait until then to get the most stable iOS 16 release.

Speaking of official releases, iOS 16 also brings bad news for iPhone 6s and iPhone 7 users. The 2015 and 2016 phones will no longer receive the latest iOS version. You’ll need an iPhone 8 or later to run iOS 16, including the beta release that is now available to download.

iOS 16 announcement at WWDC 2022.
iOS 16 announcement at WWDC 2022. Image source: Apple Inc.

How to downgrade from iOS 16 beta 1 to iOS 15

The problem with beta software is that some features might not work. You can experience bugs throughout the OS or app-specific issues. Moreover, some early adopters might encounter battery life issues with the first beta versions.

Your iOS 16 beta 1 mileage may vary depending on various factors. If at any point you think you’ve had it with the bugs, there’s a way to return to the more stable iOS 15 version available for your iPhone. That might be iOS 15.5 or later, depending on when you decide to abandon the iOS 16 beta.

That’s why we told you to back up your data before getting the beta. You’ll want to ensure there’s no data loss while moving between iOS releases.

The easiest route to remove the iOS 16 beta 1 release from your iPhone is to delete the beta profile, then wait for the next software update.

  • Go to Settings > General, and tap VPN & Device Management.
  • Tap the iOS Beta Software Profile.
  • Tap Remove Profile, then restart your device.

However, iOS 16 will not just disappear. You’ll have to wait for Apple to update iOS 15, at which point your phone will revert automatically to the latest stable iOS 15 release. The problem here is that you have to wait.

The good news is that you can wipe your iPhone clean and restore it to a previous backup. The problem, in this case, is that you might lose some of the data you’ve generated since using the iOS 16 beta 1. The restore process involves using a computer to reflash your iPhone to iOS 15 and reinstall the most recent backup. The process takes longer, with detailed instructions available from Apple.

Finally, there’s also a way to downgrade iOS 16 beta 1 to iOS 15 without losing any data. It also involves using a computer to Upgrade the software via iTunes/Finder. This older downgrade guide should help you through it.

As a reminder, it’s a good idea to back up your iOS 16 beta 1 iPhone. In a worst-case scenario, you’ll be able to restore your iPhone to that version.

More Apple coverage: For more Apple news, visit our iPhone 14 guide.


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