Apple has released the first developer beta of iOS 13.1. This is highly unusual, for a couple of reasons. But it also makes sense. Here's why.

What did Apple do?

Apple's iOS software for iPhones is expected to be updated to iOS 13 in a couple of weeks alongside the unveiling of a new iPhone range. Apple has been beta-testing this major update with developers (and anyone willing to try it) for the past few months. And, just today, it released the iOS 13.1 developer beta. The thing is, Apple doesn’t normally share beta ".1" versions of iOS updates until after it actually releases the major update.

Why did this happen?

Here's how Apple's beta releases tend to go: Apple develops a software update, seeds a beta build to developers to try, and then it allows public testers to try the very same software. Apple uses their feedback to fix the software and improve its security. Once a thorough testing has been completed by all parties, the final version of the software is given the go-ahead to release over the air to all supported iPhone models.

Apple may have skipped to iOS 13.1 beta-testing because it's already prepared iOS 13 for release, and it's likely readying iOS 13.1 as a quick follow-up update (bringing the usual round of bug fixes, security improvements, and feature enhancements). No, it doesn't mean Apple will jump iOS 13 altogether. That major update is still expected to release to in September, now with iOS 13.1 to follow within days or weeks later. 

How does this affect you?

It doesn't really affect you. Just expect an iOS 13.1 mini-update shortly after you get iOS 13 in the coming weeks. Many sites are already tracking the changes between iOS 13 and 13.1, and there doesn't seem to be many, which is a good thing. Even features that were once removed from the iOS 13 beta test, like Shortcuts Automations and Share ETA in Maps, are now present in iOS 13.1, according to 9to5Mac.