How do developers update beta tests

iOS 14.6: Last Beta with New Features - How to Install

Peter Müller, Simon Lohmann

The last beta of iOS 14.6 is available - surprisingly there is a new function for lost airtags.

Already in the code of the first beta there were indications that Apple Music will in future also offer music in high resolution (hires). Yesterday Apple confirmed this in a press release, shortly afterwards the developer also released the fourth beta of iOS 14.6, which contains a few new features:

Apple Music lossless and spatial audio

Apple Music's new features for high-definition, lossless sound and Dolby Atmos will come in June and will require iOS 14.6. However, you may not see these features right away if you upgrade to iOS 14.6 - these features require a server-side update coming in June. Read more about the new Apple Music features and what's behind them here.

Apple Card Family

This version of iOS adds support for Apple Card Family features announced at the Spring Loaded event in April. For users in German-speaking countries, however, this is relatively unimportant, since you cannot use the card in this country anyway.

Podcast Subscriptions

Apple's Podcast Subscriptions feature, which was also announced at the Spring Loaded Event in April, will come with iOS 14.6.

Airtag and "Where is?"

Apple adds the option to add an email address to Lost Mode instead of a phone number for Airtag and Where's Network accessories. The airtag also shows the owner's partially masked phone number when scanned with an NFC-enabled device.

reachability

Voice Control users can only use their voice to unlock their iPhone for the first time after a reboot.

You can also search for new features yourself if the innovations in iOS 14.5 are not enough for you. But be careful: the betas that Apple always publishes first for developers and later makes available to the interested public are not fully developed software, errors can happen. It is therefore advisable to install the betas on a second device that you do not have to rely on all the time. If you do not have one, you should make a backup before the beta installation so that you can revert to the last stable version in the event of a problem.

Developer First

Developers registered with Apple usually have a slight head start on pre-release versions. If a system is completely new, as is the case every summer at WWDC, it can be a week or more. As a rule, developers get access to the previously announced versions on the day of the keynote, the public beta test then only begins after the developer conference. Often the second developer preview is only the first public beta. With point updates such as iOS 14.6, the gap is smaller, developers usually only have access one day earlier. With iPadOS 14.5 and iOS 14.5 it was three days, the last versions of Beta 8 appeared at the same time. In rare cases only developers get a new beta version, even more rare are maintenance and security updates that Apple publishes immediately after purely internal tests.

In order to benefit from developer previews, you must be registered as a developer with Apple, the annual fee for the developer program is 99 US dollars. The installation itself is equivalent to the public beta, which we explain in the following section.

iOS 14.6 Public Beta: Register, download and install

Since 2014, Apple has been inviting public beta tests, starting with OS 10.10 Yosemite. In the following year, iOS was added with version 9, and since last year it has also been possible to install and test watchOS in advance without being registered as a developer with Apple.

Participation in the public beta program is free, you can register at beta.apple.com. Then download a profile on your iPhone that gives you access to the betas. It works the same way for iPadOS and macOS. How to proceed in detail:

  1. Open beta.apple.com on the desired device

  2. Register with your Apple ID

  3. Accept the agreement between Apple and the volunteer tester

  4. On the page that appears there is the section "Get started", there click on the link "Register your iOS device"

  5. In step 2 on the new website there is now the option to download the beta profile, either click on the "Load profile" button or go to the link: beta.apple.com/profile.

  6. Allow the download

  7. Switch to the Settings app and install the downloaded profile, this will appear under your own Apple ID account in the "Profile loaded" tab.

  8. Confirm the installation with the device's passcode.

  9. The device will now restart.

  10. You can then switch to "Software Updates" in the settings and download and install the current beta like a normal iOS.