Apple is expected to unveil the first public beta versions of iOS 10 and macOS Sierra later today, July 7, according to The Verge. The move comes two days after the company released the second batch of betas for iOS 10, macOS Sierra, tvOS 10, and watchOS 3.
What is Beta Software?
Beta releases are software, applications, and services not yet ready for the public, but past the point when they are only available for testing internally. Companies such as Apple provide beta software to developers and non-techies to solicit feedback, which helps them fix issues before the software is widely released.
By their very nature, beta releases may contain errors or inaccuracies, and may not function as well as commercially released software. This is why Apple recommends only installing beta software on “non-production devices that are not business critical.”
In reality, Apple knows that most public beta testers will be installing prerelease software on their everyday devices. Because of this, the company has implemented a type of stopgap measure to protect users from experiencing significant problems. Registered iOS developers will continue to be the only ones allowed to test early macOS and iOS beta versions. Public beta participants, by contrast, will only receive later versions.
For example, the first and second iOS 10 betas were only released to developers.
You can ask to join the Apple Beta Software Program at this link.
By submitting an application, you are asking Apple to allow you to use both macOS and iOS beta software. Once you are accepted, you’ll receive an email with further instructions.
Being part of the Apple Beta Software Program can be a rewarding experience. However, it isn’t for the faint of heart. By joining the program, you can expect to install prerelease software on your devices on a fairly regular basis, sometimes two to three times per month. If this sounds like a lot of work, the program isn’t for you.
For more information on the program, visit this link.