Apple Finally Ships Public Betas of iOS 12, tvOS 12, and macOS Mojave

Posted on June 26, 2018 by Paul Thurrott in iOS, Mac and macOS with 14 Comments

Tip: Get the iOS, macOS, and tvOS Betas Today

Three weeks ago, Apple announced public beta releases for iOS 12, tvOS 12, and macOS Mojave. They are finally available now.

“Help make the next releases of iOS, macOS, and tvOS our best yet,” Apple’s Beta Software Program website notes. “As a member of the Apple Beta Software Program, you can take part in shaping Apple software by test-driving pre-release versions and letting us know what you think.”

You may recall that, at that time, I wrote a tip about how you could get those beta releases. But that was a bit premature. OK, three weeks premature. But those betas are now finally available to the public. And not just to those on Apple’s paid developer program.

Oddly, they don’t appear to be updated at all. That is, I think the builds that the public is getting today are the same ones that went out to Apple’s private developer program three long weeks ago. That seems odd to me, and I’m surprised Apple didn’t tie these releases to a new round of beta milestones.

Anyway, sorry again about the mix up three weeks ago.


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Comments (15)

15 responses to “Apple Finally Ships Public Betas of iOS 12, tvOS 12, and macOS Mojave”

  1. jimchamplin

    Generally they prefer for the public betas to be a little “behind” so as to ensure that more-proven code is going out. It’s not release-quality but if they’re running behind the DP, then they can catch the big issues there first before finalizing the public previews.

    It was this way with the last couple of releases too, where the first public beta was significantly behind the second DP.

  2. zillundtexas

    I haven’t looked, but I’m sure that the Public Beta will be based on the Developer Beta 2 that was recently rollled out. Apple’s standard practice since it initiated the Public Beta Programme has been to release the Public Betas of their software after the second developer betas gets pushed. If history holds, we can expect new betas every two weeks throughout the summer. They usually stagger the dev and PB updates by a day.

  3. jdmp10

    Can anyone who may have a second iPhone laying around who put the initial DP on their primary phone comment on any differences they have encountered so far? I'm trying to gauge if there are any odd issues that would make this first PB not daily driver worthy. My wife's iPhone 7 for some reason hasn't encountered too much of the iOS 11 sluggishness problem that became synonymous with that release and on my iPhone 6 for instance running the latest 11.4.1 DP, it is still sluggish even after changing out the battery (Apple's so-called solution).

    • Sykeward

      In reply to jdmp10:

      The public preview is based on Developer Preview 2, which was released last week. I've been using iOS 12 as my daily driver since DP 1 was released, and the quality of it is light-years better than the betas of iOS 11. It's been substantially faster than iOS 11 in everyday use (FaceID is like night and day) and app compatibility has been pretty seamless. I haven't encountered any show-stopping bugs; the two main issues I had with DP1 were heavier-than-normal battery drain and flakiness with GPS mapping where apps like Google Maps/Apple maps took a long time to get a lock, couldn't tell initially which direction the car was going or exactly which street I was on, etc. Both of these issues are much better in the public beta version.

      • jdmp10

        In reply to Sykeward:

        Thanks for the feedback, I appreciate it. I too had read when the initial DP was released that performance was immediately better than iOS 11.

        Wasn't the DP2 released today? If not than was it DP3 that was released today along with the first PB?

        Also looks like you're running this on an iPhone X since it has FaceID, I'd be interested in seeing how the oldest devices that iOS 12 supports (5S, 6/6+, SE) do since those took the biggest performance hit on iOS 11 vs. 10 previously. I'll install this PB tonight on my 6, I'm hoping for a good result.

    • curtisspendlove

      In reply to jdmp10:

      I’ve been running all developer betas on my primary devices since they dropped.

      I wouldn't recommend that, by the way. But I have been fine.

      Only problem that irritated me was the GPS issue Sykeward mentioned. Audio directions were fine, the UI just didn’t track GPS direction or location very well. Haven’t tried it in DB2 yet, but it sounds like it is better.

      But it that doesn’t guarantee there won’t be a showstopper dropped in a future build. I find that unlikely, but beta is as beta does.

    • jimchamplin

      In reply to jdmp10:

      I might go one step beyond Skyeward and say that general performance is noticeably better than 11 overall. There’s a couple of weirdnesses, but that’s to be expected.

      Summing up, my iPad mini 2 is once more quite snappy instead of poky and laggy and my 6S feels nicely charged!

  4. Kendo88

    The public beta released is based on the Beta 2 that Apple release only 1 week ago

  5. markbyrn

    iOS 12 is undoubtedly the weakest major update going; not seeing the vaunted stability either. Mr. Cook and company should spend less time at parades and more time in engineering.

  6. Chris Hedlund

    Why does the title of this article need to say 'Finally'? Why can't you just say 'Apple Ships Public Betas of iOS 12, tvOS 12, and macOS Mojave'. Was there some delay or were they behind or something?

    • nbplopes

      In reply to Chris_Hedlund:

      Its just Thurrot being honest and telling like it is ;)

      PS: The betas were immediately available to registered developers at the day of launch. After three weeks they launch to the general public. Pretty standard practice across the industry with the exception probably to MS's Windows 10.

      Since Windows 10 has the insiders program that distributes beta software through robustness levels called rings, all opened to the public. After a few days one can also download the beta ISO's instead of updating through the automatic updates mechanism embedded in Windows 10. Before Windows 10, they did as Apple does. I think back than only MSDN and TechNet subscribers had legit access to the betas.

      Not only this but they also have substantially different agreements when it comes to using betas:

      MS (from the Insiders agreement in BOLD)

      Device Warranty. By installing Software on your device, you may void or impact your device warranty and may not be entitled to support from the manufacturer of your device or network operator, if applicable.

      Apple (from Apple support FAQ on betas)

      Will installing public beta software from the Apple Beta Software Program void my hardware warranty? No, installing the public beta software does not void your hardware warranty.


    • curtisspendlove

      In reply to Chris_Hedlund:

      Why does the title of this article need to say 'Finally'?

      I read it as a bit of self-deprecating humor based on him jumping the gun when 11.4 was still on the public beta channels. :)

  7. truerock2

    OK... just the way I do things...

    First release the beta to a small group of experts - if that goes well... then release to a wider group of individuals.

    This is the way stupid people do it:

    Release a new beta to everyone simultaneously.

  8. MacLiam

    Well, I put iOS 12 on an older iPad mini with retina display, an original iPad Pro (9.7"), and a sacrificial iPhone 6S+ that I now mostly don't use. An 8+, which is now my main phone, remains on the current 11.4 release. I haven't yet seen problems on either iPad or the older iPhone, but then I haven't really taken them out for an extended shakedown run. My verdict so far: harmless, barely different in terms of the user experience.

    I updated a recently acquired Apple TV 4K to tvOS 12. I recently ordered a couple of Dolby Atmos speakers for another purpose entirely, but at least Apple's box will be able to use them as intended with the new OS release. I'm not expecting an "Oh wow!" moment, but I will report back if there actually is one.

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