Last week, Apple gave us a preview of iOS 16, the next big software update coming to iPhone, and it’s delivering a lot of cool new features. The Lock Screen is getting completely revamped. You’re going to finally be able to edit and unsend iMessages, as well as mark them as unread so that you can respond later. It’s going to be a lot easier and intuitive to use voice dictation. And that’s really just the beginning.
The problem is that most of us will have to wait several months to try out these features, as iOS 16 isn’t going to roll out until the fall. However, if you’re willing to download the beta version of iOS 16, you can try them out right now. The catch: you’ll have to pay an Apple Developer membership fee that costs $99 per year. Alternatively you can wait, if not for the full release than for the public beta of iOS 16, which Apple will be releasing before the software hits final release.
Before downloading, a word of caution. It’s called the “beta” version of iOS 16 for a reason — it’s not fully cooked. It’s likely to have bugs and other issues, which developers are meant to find and then fix before the fully baked version of the software rolls out to the masses. So before you download, we suggest that you backup your iPhone. You don’t want to risk losing things like photos, iMessages and number of things that you hold dear.
(Backup your iPhone: Connect your iPhone to your Mac or MacBook via a charging cable > open Finder > select your iPhone in the sidebar on the left > select the option to backup your iPhone to your computer.)
How to download the beta version of iOS 16
- Disconnect your iPhone from your computer.
- Click this link to Apple’s Developer Program enrollment website.
- Click the big blue button that says “Sign Up.”
- Sign into your Apple ID, follow the on-screen instructions and agree to the terms of the Apple Beta Software Program.
- Once approved, open Safari and select “enroll your iOS device.”
- Select the “Download profile” button on the following page and follow the on-screen instructions.
- Open your iPhone’s Settings app.
- Select General and the beta software will be located in the Software Update section.
- Select “Download and Install.”
iOS 16 will be supported on the iPhone 8 or later. This unfortunately means that if you have an older iPhone — such as 2016 iPhone SE, iPhone 6s or iPhone 7 — those will be able to download iOS 16 (or the beta version) and you will not be able to access its cool new features.
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