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NEW OS, WHO THIS?

You can try out iOS 13 now—if you dare

Mike Murphy
By Mike Murphy

Technology editor

Apple has opened up its beta testing program today (June 24) to anyone wishing to test out the latest software for the iPhone, iPad, and Mac computers.

The public beta operating systems for iOS 13, iPadOS, and macOS Catalina, all of which were unveiled at Apple’s developer conference earlier this month, were put up on Apple’s testing website. Anyone with an Apple ID and a compatible device can download the software.

Before you jump in to the world of unreleased software, there’s a couple things to remember. Firstly, you’ll have to be patient.  Apple’s site is jammed with tons of other people wanting to do the same thing. If you can, wait until you’re not trying to download during prime US working hours. (At the time of publishing, the site was struggling to load for me.)

Then there’s the bigger issue: This software is not final. It will have bugs that Apple needs to work out before the official release. Some of these bugs could be serious, resulting in devices that crash, eat up a ton of battery life, or encounter other unforeseen consequences.

Make sure to back up your devices before installing any beta software, and be prepared for potentially odd behavior. (Then again, that can also happen with supposedly stable releases of software, too.)

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