Every year, Apple makes its developer betas for iOS, iPadOS, watchOS, macOS, and tvOS available to those signed up for the Apple Developer Program the same day it announces its new software at WWDC. That’s changing this year.
Historically, only those paying the $99 annual fee for the Apple Developer Program were able to access developer betas for the upcoming software releases that were announced at WWDC in June. Those of us who weren’t paying that fee have always had to wait for the public betas in July or the full release in the fall.
As reported by MacRumors, Apple is changing its approach with iOS 17, iPadOS 17, watchOS 10, macOS Sonoma, and tvOS 17. Now, anyone who signs up for a free developer account will be able to download all of the developer betas to their devices. The paywall is down, so why wait until the public beta in July, right?!
No! Don’t do it! At least not on your primary devices. While it may be enticing to jump in and enjoy all of the new features that Apple has announced, the first few versions of developer betas also tend to be rife with bugs. There are too many horror stories of people installing a developer beta on their main iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV, or Apple Watch and running into problems.
So, if you want to check out the newest features that Apple has to offer with its software, find a secondary device that you are comfortable sacrificing to Craig Federighi in order to get early access to features the rest of us will be waiting at least until July to try out.
I personally don’t have any secondary devices lying around, so I’ll be one of the ones waiting until July to see how things go with the public beta release. That’s when I’ll be comfortable rolling the dice to get my early access to the new software.