Before the release of almost every iOS update, Apple puts it through a few beta tests before the final version is launched. In the past, the giant tech company has kept beta tests exclusive to developers, but the recent beta for the upcoming iOS 8.3 update marks the first time Apple has given the public a chance to participate as well, via the Apple Seed program.
Only a select number of people from the general public were given access to iOS 8.3 Beta 3 (as it’s officially known), but the move makes it clear that Apple sees the inclusion of the public to be a benefit more than a detriment. Who better to test the update than the very people that will come to use it the most?
But let’s say a person doesn’t have the right credentials to even get close to Apple letting them in, but they still want to check out iOS 8.3 long before its release. There’s no way to read another person’s experiences with it, since Apple explicitly forbids people from discussing the beta, so that only leaves two options: Getting close to someone that’s already in, or finding an unofficial way to get in.
Fortunately, there’s a method in which to download and install the beta content without the need of an invite from Apple, and it comes from phoneArena.
The steps are as follows:
- Choose the right link from phoneArena that corresponds with the device the iOS 8.3 Beta 3 will install to; download the.ipsw files
- Connect device to computer and open iTunes
- Run a Back-up, on the off chance that things go wrong
- Hold Shift (Windows) or Alt (Mac) and click the ‘Update’ button; direct iTunes to the.ipsw files from earlier
- iTunes should install the beta without any issues, but if it fails, check to see if the most recent version of iTunes is installed and try again
There are a few things that should be noted before eagerly downloading the files containing the iOS 8.3 beta. Chief among them being the fact that, since it’s a beta, nothing is in perfect working condition, and any problems users run into may be without solutions. Installing the beta to the iOS device that’s used most frequently is also a bad idea, as stated by GottaBeMobile, due to the aforementioned reason.
If all the steps are followed and iOS 8.3 beta 3 is installed, be sure not to restart the device. Since the forthcoming method doesn’t require an Apple developer or Apple Seed account, the act of restarting the iOS device could result in Apple’s servers checking for the ID associated with one of them. In the event that it doesn’t find one, users may have to downgrade to a previous version of iOS 8. Most likely iOS 8.2, which only just released last week.
iOS 8.3 beta 3 is unlikely to be the last beta, and may actually be succeeded by at least one more before the update is finally released. Presumably, the next beta test will have fewer (or newer) problems, so some iOS users may find it beneficial to hold off on tackling the current build of iOS 8.3.
[Image via Apple]