iOS, macOS, and iPad OS Public Betas: How to Setup

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Photo: nikkimeel (Shutterstock) – If you haven’t already, download the latest beta version that contains Universal Control and Face ID masks. Apple’s latest round of iPhone, iPad, and Mac software was unveiled this week for the first time. There are a number of new features and updates coming to iOS 15.4, iPad OS 15.4, and macOS 12.3, among them Universal Control and new emojis, as well as the ability to unlock your iPhone while wearing a mask. If you don’t join Apple’s beta program, you won’t be able to use these capabilities for a long.

On Thursday, January 27th, Apple made the betas of iOS 15.4, iPadOS 15.4, and macOS 12.3 available to software developers first. Assuming you aren’t an Apple developer, the process of installing the developer beta on your iPhone is likely already well-known to you. Instead, we’ll show you how to download and install the public betas that Apple made available for free on Friday, Jan. 28.

Beta upgrades for iOS 15, iPadOS 15, and macOS 12 are compatible with all compatible iPhones, iPads, and Macs. You’re set to go as long as your gadget can run the most recent version of Apple’s software.

Become a beta tester for Apple by signing up your smartphone

You’ll need to sign up for Apple’s beta program before you can run these betas. Using the device in question, visit this page. Log in using the Apple ID associated with your Apple device by selecting “Sign up.”

Once you’ve logged in, the site should automatically choose the appropriate software for your device. Don’t forget to do it yourself if you can’t. To enroll your device, click the Get Started link.

Before continuing, Apple will ask you to make a backup of your device. A good piece of advise. A beta version of any program is going to be buggy and incomplete. There will be no way to recover any data if anything goes wrong or if you decide to go back to an older version of the program. Because you can only access your iCloud backups if you’re running iOS/iPadOS 15.4 or macOS 12.3, make sure all of your sensitive data is either linked to your Apple ID or saved somewhere else if you create an iCloud backup while using the beta.

Time Machine, Apple’s backup solution, is the recommended method for backing up both your iPhone and iPad on your Mac. You may also fall back on other measures of data protection if necessary. Of course, if you’re willing to accept the danger of losing your data, you don’t need to back up.

Instructions may change significantly based on the kind of gadget being used. If you’re having trouble downloading and installing the beta for your specific device, Apple provides a step-by-step guide.

Is there a way to install the beta versions of iOS and iPadOS?

On your iPhone or iPad, hit “Download profile” on Apple’s beta website. You’ll be notified when the profile is installed by your device. Now, go to Settings > General > Profiles, touch the profile, and follow the on-screen steps to install the profile on your smartphone. After that, go to Settings > General > Software Update and apply the new version.

Installing the macOS 12.3 beta

It’s a little different on the Macintosh. Click on “Download the macOS Public Beta Access Utility,” then double-click the dmg in your Downloads folder. Get started by following the on-screen directions here. Open System Preferences > Software Updates, and you should see a fresh macOS 12.3 update.

Is there anything new in Apple’s most recent betas?

Using the Universal Control update, you can operate on numerous Macs and iPads at the same time with one keyboard, mouse, or trackpad. This is my favorite new feature. Place your devices side by side and slide your cursor between them to switch between them. No further setup is necessary. You should see it.

Despite the fact that Universal Control was promised as part of iOS 15’s wide release last autumn, it has been postponed since. I don’t typically go to the trouble of installing beta software on my Mac, but the addition of Universal Control is one I can’t live without.

A major addition to Face ID on the iPhone is the inclusion of mask support. For a short time, an Apple Watch user could unlock their Face ID iPhone while wearing a mask, but that capability has already been removed. That was a wonderful inclusion for many of us, but for those who don’t have an Apple Watch, unlocking an iPhone with a mask is still a hassle. If you have an iPhone 12 or newer, you may now unlock your phone while wearing a mask without a watch thanks to iOS 15.4. (which is a bummer for those of us with an 11 or older).

There are almost 30 new emoji in this release, including the Melting Face, Hands Over Mouth, Saluting Face and Dotted Line Face. Visit Emojipedia to discover all the new icons that will be introduced in 15.4 and 12.3 in the next months.

There’s a new Keyboard Brightness setting in Control Center for iPad users that utilize the Magic Keyboard. Since the brightness adjustments have long been hidden under Settings, this is a huge improvement. Before, you couldn’t easily adjust the brightness of your keyboard as you could on a Mac, so this is a huge improvement.

In these beta releases, there are a number of new and exciting features:

  • Your iCloud Keychain passwords may include notes.
  • You may use your iPhone to sign in to websites on your Mac or iPad.
  • The DualSense controller’s adaptive triggers are not supported.
  • When it’s accessible, the share sheet will let you access SharePlay.
  • Updates to the firmware of your AirPods may now be performed on your Mac.
  • Using a new “Trade-In Tool,” you can find out how much your item is truly worth by having it inspected for aesthetic flaws.
  • Using your iPhone or iPad, you can now easily connect to wifi networks on Apple TV.