Apple is rolling out a new beta program for iOS 9 next month. This will be the first ever public beta program for iOS. You may not know, but Apple is not new to giving developers, and customers, a preview of their latest software. There has been a public beta program for for Mac OS X for quite some time.
Yet, I’m sure you’re asking yourself – Should you sign up for the beta?
Doing a beta brings several risks to your device, including the possibility of bricking your device, but such a risk is limited. Developers, such as myself, have had early access to iOS betas for years, and it is a fairly easy process to install the beta, though you do need a desktop computer running the last version of iTunes.
Here are some things to note before using a beta version of iOS:
- This is a beta and will have bugs either in the OS software or the programs installed on your devices. Several developers don’t updated until the final release has been provided. So you might not be able to use some programs. Last year I beta tested iOS 8, and Google + crashed on open and I wasn’t able to use it for weeks. As more updates to the beta were released, it got better, but still had bugs.
- Support will be limited and Apple Store and Apple Phone support will likely not be able to help you. You can report bugs on the Apple Support Center, but won’t like get addressed right away. Apple normally releases 6 or 7 betas before the final, grandmaster release.
- Your carrier won’t be able to help you either. Many of them will say they don’t support that version of iOS.
- There is no going back, well you can go back, but Apple doesn’t recommend it, and you will not be able to restore from your iCloud backup. You could also have problems with an older version after restoring.
This will likely be a “use at your own risk.” But, if you can live with an iPhone or iPad with bugs, or maybe you have an older device, then give it a shot. You can sign up for the Apple Public Beta program here.