*UPDATE* iOS 16 public beta release date, features compatibility

All the information we have about the public betas of iOS 16

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Latest: The iOS 16 public beta is now available, giving you a few weeks to try the new operating system before we expect the full release.

The first public beta release was on Tuesday, July 12th, with the iOS 16 public beta 2 release date on July 28th. Now iOS 16 beta 5 has been seeded to developers, bringing even more tweaks to the upcoming beta 3 release.

iOS 16 beta 5 features

iOS 16’s features are becoming more noticeably polished as the beta phases progress.

The latest beta for iOS 16 (beta 5) was released on August 8th, and has given us a clear insight into the coming features for the public beta 3. Here’s what’s added.

Battery percentage bar

Last seen before the iPhone X and its top notch, the battery percentge bar (one of the most requested iOS features) is now back. It can be seen the whole time – whether charging, charged or during regular use.

Copy and delete screenshots

There are two things people want to do with screenshots, share them and then easily delete them. iOS 16 Beta 5 has added a copy to clipboard fucntion, from which it’s easier to share in notes, email and similar. But it’s also easier to now delete screenshots, saving them from adding to your camera roll an impacting storage.

New Find My App tone

Simple one, this. There’s now a new tone in Find My App which sounds like a ringtone. So if you’re pinging your device to find it, there’s a ringtone like sound. Also in iOS 16 Beta 5, there’s the option to delete Find My App. Why you’d want to we’re not sure. But you can if you wish.

iOS 16 beta 4 features

The iOS 16 beta 4 offered the following highlights.

iMessage edit, undo changes

Users can now edit messages a maximum of five times, with the edited history being sent to recipients. After five edits the edit option disappears, while recipients can tap the ‘Edits label’ to see revisions. However, users can also undo sent messages, and in Beta 4 users have up to two minutes to unsend.

Both sender and recipient need to use iOS 16 for these features.

Live Activities

While Live Activities (eg. real-time tracking of a delivery using a widget) will not be available at the launch of iOS 16, developers are now able to start testing the API. Full functionality should appear for users in the future, with Live Activities potentially arriving in iOS 16.1

New Wallpapers

Architectural and wildflower wallpapers have been added.

Unsend emails

Beta 4 adds the option to unsend emails when using the Mail app, with options of 10, 20, or 30 seconds. Previously, this had to be done inside of 10 seconds.

Lockscreen notifications

The lockscreen notification settings have been tweaked inside Settings. Users will have the choice to pick between visuals for Count, Stack, and List options, to decide how notifications appear on the lockscreen.

New Lockscreen Customization

Apple has also tweaked the customization options for the lockscreen in iOS 16 Beta 4, with options for color, gradient, photos, and additional options at the bottom of the screen.

New Carplay Wallpapers

There are new options for Carplay wallpapers, with a static iOS 16 version, plus multi-colored, blue, and gray versions.

ios 16 public beta release date info

iOS 16 Public Beta release schedule

  • iOS 16 Developer Beta 1 release date: June 6th, 2022
  • iOS 16 Developer Beta 2 release date: June 22nd, 2022
  • iOS 16 Developer Beta 3 release date: July 6th, 2022
  • iOS 16 Public Beta release date: July 12th, 2022
  • iOS 16 Developer Beta 4 release date: July 27th, 2022
  • iOS Public Beta 2 release date: July 28th 2022
  • iOS 16 Beta 5 release date – August 8th, 2022

How to download the iOS 16 public beta

Even though the public beta is here, it’s worth knowing that the software is still experimental at this stage, and not without kinks.

The process to download the iOS 16 public beta is pretty straightforward, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take care. Betas aren’t problem free, so ensuring you backup your iPhone is essential before you do download pre-release software.

Apple itself states betas, “may contain errors or inaccuracies and may not function as well as commercially released software”.

Follow our guide on how to download and install the iOS 16 public beta, and you can have it within minutes.

iOS 16 public beta iPhone compatibility

Public beta compatibility will be available for iPhone 8 models and later and so those models may gain access to iOS 16 on release. It’s suggested you may need an iPhone 11 to get the full feature set of iOS 16.

However, Apple has pointed out that the LiDAR (light detection and ranging) scanner, available on the iPhone 12 Pro, will be needed for Door Detection and People Detection features.

iOS 16 full release date

A date we don’t yet know is the iOS 16 full release date. But this should coincide with the unveiling and launch of the iPhone 14, with iPhone 14 pre-orders available shortly after the event.

Previously, these have gone hand-in-hand and the Apple launch event is usually around mid-September.

In 2021 Apple’s launch event was on Tuesday, September 14th. Following the event, iOS 15 and iPhone 13 models were released on Monday, September 20th.

The equivalent dates this year would be Tuesday, 13th September for the event, and Monday, 19th September 2022.