Apple engineers are working around the clock to build new versions of macOS, iOS, tvOS, watchOS, Xcode, and more for users and developers alike. Whether you're building an app for one of Apple's upcoming operating systems or just excited for all the new features in messaging, you're probably going to want to get ahold of the company's beta software.

What iPhones, iPads, Macs, Apple Watches, Apple TVs will run the new developer and public betas?

iPhone running iOS 13

  • iPhone XR
  • iPhone XS
  • iPhone XS Max
  • iPhone X
  • iPhone 8
  • iPhone 8 Plus
  • iPhone 7
  • iPhone 7 Plus
  • iPhone 6s
  • iPhone 6s Plus
  • iPhone 6
  • iPhone 6 Plus
  • iPhone SE

iPod touch running iOS 13

  • iPod touch 7th generation

iPad running iPadOS 13

  • 12.9-inch iPad Pro
  • 11-inch iPad Pro
  • 10.5-inch iPad Pro
  • 9.7-inch iPad Pro
  • iPad (6th generation)
  • iPad (5th generation)
  • iPad mini (5th generation)
  • iPad mini 4
  • iPad Air (3rd generation)
  • iPad Air 2

Mac running macOS Catalina

  • iMac (2012 or newer)
  • iMac Pro (2017 or newer)
  • MacBook Air (2012 or newer)
  • MacBook (2015 or newer)
  • Mac mini (2012 or newer)
  • MacBook Pro (2012 or newer)
  • Mac Pro (2013 or newer)

Apple Watch running watchOS 6

watchOS 6 requires iPhone 6s or later with iOS 13 or later, and one of the following Apple Watch models:

  • Apple Watch Series 1
  • Apple Watch Series 2
  • Apple Watch Series 3
  • Apple Watch Series 4

Apple TV running tvOS 13

  • Apple TV HD (4th-generation)
  • Apple TV 4K

I'm not a developer — should I still run a developer beta or public beta on my [insert device here]?

If you've got a case of FOMO (fear of missing out) and you just want to try out the beta of an upcoming operating system, you should consider waiting. If you have a secondary device, a public beta is more reliable than a developer beta, but there are still a lot of bugs to work out, so we don't recommend installing any beta on your daily device. It's too risky.

We've got a thorough guide for who should or shouldn't participate in public beta programs.

How to sign up for a developer account or public beta membership

If you are an app developer or are interested in becoming one, you can enroll in Apple's Developer Program to become a part of the Apple development community and get the tools and training you need to develop apps for the App Store. With this membership, you'll get access to developer betas of iOS, iPadOS, macOS, tvOS, and the only beta access for watchOS (there's no pubic beta for watchOS). Apple App Developer Program memberships cost $99 per year.

Developers tend to get beta software first, but that software can be unstable and bug-prone. If you really want a sneak peek at Apple's new software, but don't want to take the risk of bricking your device on a developer seed, the company also offers a public beta program for its users, which usually launches about a month after the developer betas, so you don't have to wait too long.

You can sign up for the public beta by visiting beta.apple.com and clicking the Sign Up link, or — if you're already a public beta member — logging in with your Apple ID and password.

Designate devices — and back them up

While you can install beta software on your primary Mac, iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV, you risk rendering your devices inoperative. Before you do anything else, you're going to want to pick what devices you're going to install the betas on. Remember, it is not advisable to install a developer beta or public beta on your main used device. Choose wisely.

Most important of all, back up your device before installing a beta. This will be most helpful if you run across a problem and having an archived backup is required for downgrading.

How to install beta versions of macOS, iOS, watchOS, and tvOS

Here are our guides for installing the developer beta for Apple's operating systems.

For developers

For public beta participants

Unfortunately, Apple does not currently offer a watchOS public beta at this time. (For good reason: There's no easy way to downgrade your Apple Watch after upgrading it, which means if something goes wrong, you'd have to send it back to Apple).

How to report bugs and send feedback

You can send feedback to Apple through the Feedback Assistance app on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac or directly from Apple's Feedback Portal on the Web.

How to downgrade from the beta

If for any reason, you decide that beta testing is not for you, you can downgrade, but you'll need to have proper backups before you upgrade so read our guides before you get started.

Any questions?

Let us know in the comments.

Running beta software

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