Apple on Monday released the first public beta version of its upcoming iOS 11 software, and it’s available to download immediately for members of Apple’s public beta testing program.
Announced on June 5 at WWDC ’17, iOS 11 is a major update to the iPhone and iPad’s software. It features a redesigned Control Center, supports peer-to-peer Apple Pay payments in Messages, adds a dedicated Files app, and a host of other significant upgrades. iOS 11 is also the largest update to the iPad version of iOS, with a new macOS-inspired dock, improved App Switching and Apple Pencil support, the Files app, as well as systemwide drag-and-drop and enhanced multitasking abilities — all of which make iPad on iOS 11 even closer to a powerful notebook replacement.
iOS 11 also features smaller — but no less useful — updates, like baked-in screen recording, automatic call answering, enhancements to Siri, Camera and Photos, and a Do Not Disturb While Driving feature. Notably, it also marks the debut of ARKit, an augmented reality toolset for developers that, in the words of Apple, turns iOS into the “largest AR platform in the world.” And, despite iOS 11’s official debut is still a few months off, its powerful potential is already being demonstrated by developers.
As with all software beta versions, it’s wise to exercise caution. As we saw with the first iOS 11 developer beta, test software can be extremely buggy. It might be smart to hold off on downloading the public beta on your primary iOS device, or at the very least, ensure that you backup your device to iTunes or iCloud before proceeding.
How to Download iOS 11 Public Beta
To download the public beta, you’ll need to sign up and enroll your device in Apple’s Beta Software Program — which you can do via Apple’s website. Learn how to install the iOS 11 public beta here. If you’d rather wait for the final version, iOS 11 is slated for a general rollout in the fall.