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(Pocket-lint) - Before Apple releases software updates for everyone to install on their iPhone or iPad, it seeds an early version to developers and also allows the public to opt-in and test the updates first. If you want to access these and try new features before everyone else, then here is how to install the latest iOS and iPadOS public betas on your iPhone and iPad, respectively.

Just keep in mind betas are not finished software. They may be loaded with bugs, so it's probably wise to test them on your secondary devices. 

AppleHow to install the iOS 15.4 and iPadOS 15.4 public betas photo 2

How to try the latest iOS and iPadOS public betas

You can install the latest public betas of iOS and iPadOS in less than five minutes. Just be sure to join Apple's beta software program first, and then you can get install the betas to test.

  1. Go to Apple’s beta software website from your iPhone or iPad via the Safari browser.
  2. Look for the sign-in button and log in with your Apple ID credentials.
  3. On the next page, scroll down to the "Get Started” subhead.
  4. On the next page, select the "Enroll" your device link - if you haven’t enrolled it already.
  5. On the next page, look for the button that says “Download profile”, and then tap it.
  6. This will serve up a warning. Select "Allow".
  7. You will get a pop-up that says you can set the new profile from the Settings app.
  8. Open the Settings app and look for the new "Profile Downloaded" section near the top.
  9. Select it, and then you’ll have access to the beta software download.
  10. Select "Install" in the corner and re-enter your password.
  11. Agree to the consent statement by tapping "Install" one more time.
  12. You may need to restart your device for the profile to activate.

Already a member of Apple's beta software program?

As a member of Apple's beta program, you not only get access to the latest public betas, but you also get any subsequent updates. Simply go to Settings > Software Update on your iPhone or iPad to install any available beta updates. 

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How to leave an iOS or iPadOS public beta

To leave a beta, visit Apple's Unenroll page and follow the instructions.

Is it free to test a public beta?

Yes. It is free to test Apple's public betas for iOS and iPadOS.

What are the latest public betas to try?

Between major iOS and iPad OS updates, which release every autumn, Apple typically rolls out smaller so-called "dot" updates. For instance, in March 2022, it released iOS 15.4 and iPadOS 15.4. These included some exciting features, such as the ability to use Face ID with a mask (only for iPhone 12 or newer), access to 37 new emoji (like bubbles, biting lip, crutch, etc), and Universal Control, which lets you work with a single mouse and keyboard and move between Mac and iPad for a seamless experience - no setup required. 

However, before releasing iOS 15.4 and iPadOS 15.4 for everyone to use, Apple offered the public a chance to best-test both software updates. The company will likely do this again with the next "dot" updates, and it will do the same for major updates. Either way, the process of installing public betas on your iPhone and iPad is the same as described above. 

Want to know more?

Check out Apple's support page for more details. The company also explains there how you can provide feedback on betas to Apple, if you wish to do so.

Writing by Maggie Tillman.