The release of the first public beta versions of Apple software is usually highly anticipated. This year, there had been widespread rumors that the first public beta would be late. Well, not by much.

Last year, the public beta for iOS 15 debuted on June 30, almost a week after the second dev beta. This year, it has landed today, July 11, so a bit over a week later in comparison, and just five days after the third developers’ beta.

And alongside the iPhone software, today has seen the release of the public betas for the iPad, Apple Watch and, unusually, the Mac. This is almost certainly the first time the first Mac software public beta has landed on the same day as the iPhone beta.

There are loads of new features, from avoiding Captchas to a full-on Lockdown mode. Plus, the Clownfish wallpaper for the iPhone, it seems.


Then there’s Stage Manager, a brilliant new way to multi-task on selected iPads and the Mac.

Signing up to the public beta is easy, though you need to do it with your eyes open. Go to the beta software site, here, and enroll your device. Then download the appropriate profile and, well, that’s more or less it.

But it comes with caveats: Apple says (and, oh boy, I agree with this) that you should not put a public beta on a critical device. There will be issues, bugs and problems. That’s the nature of a beta. So, if you’ve put it on the Mac that’s your everyday driver, don’t be surprised if suddenly some apps won’t work properly.

The first public beta is similar to the third developers’ beta which has just been updated with a revised version. Where some beta testers complained that battery life took a dip in the first beta—another common experience—there have been fewer issues with more recent updates.


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