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Why Apple plans to give you unprecedented early access to iOS 9

Published Feb 20th, 2015 10:55AM EST
Apple iOS 8 iOS 9 Public Beta

Apple likes keeping things close to the vest but it turns out the company will do something unprecedented in the history of iOS to fix bugs: It will have public betas for future iOS releases. 9to5Mac’s Mark Gurman reports that Apple plans to launch a public beta program for iOS 8.3 and iOS 9, thus marking the first time iOS betas will be open to public input. Normally Apple has closed betas that are open only to a small circle of developers, but given the recent increase in serious bugs that have accompanied recent iOS releases, it sounds like the company wants to cast a wider net to help it root out flaws.

FROM EARLIER: To sell the Apple Watch, Apple may go where it has never been before

The public beta for iOS 8.3 will start in mid-March, say Gurman’s sources, while the public beta for iOS 9 will launch this summer in the weeks after Apple unveils iOS 9 at WWDC. Gurman says that the public iOS beta will be limited to around 100,000 people, which is significantly less than the limit of 1 million people Apple enforced for its most recent OS X public beta program.

If you want more details about this new public beta program, including codenames for all the new upcoming builds, check out Gurman’s full report by clicking here.

Prior to joining BGR as News Editor, Brad Reed spent five years covering the wireless industry for Network World. His first smartphone was a BlackBerry but he has since become a loyal Android user.