No need to wait: How to install iOS 16 now

No need to wait: How to install iOS 16 now

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No need to wait: How to install iOS 16 now
Here's how you can install the final version of iOS 16 on your iPhone today.
Image: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

iOS 16 will go out to iPhones everywhere on September 12, but you don’t have to wait. It’s possible to go ahead and install the final version this weekend when you have time to tinker with it.

And doing so doesn’t require doing anything dodgy or risky. You’ll be getting the upgrade straight from Apple… just a little earlier than scheduled.

Update: This suggestion is now moot because iOS 16 is out.

Advantages of installing iOS 16 now

iOS 16 was announced at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference way back in June, and has been in beta testing ever since, so what’s coming is not a surprise.

And there’s a lot to like.iPhone users get a dramatically improved Lock Screen, many new features in the Messages and Mail apps, the battery percentage in the status bar and more.

Wouldn’t it be great to start tinkering with these features this weekend when you (hopefully) have spare time? The alternative is to wait until Monday when you’ll probably be at work.

And getting iOS 16 now is easy and safe.

Become a beta tester… sort of

The iOS 16 release candidate went out for testing on September 7. This gives beta testers an opportunity to look over the final version of the operating system before it’s introduced to average users. In other words, Apple has made the final version available to beta testers. You can become one of these in just a few minutes.

Normally, beta testing comes with risks. You’re using pre-release software that certainly contains bugs. But this isn’t a normal situation – you’re joining the program only to get the release candidate. The same RC Apple will send to everyone on September 12.

That said, there’s a small chance the final version will be very, very slightly tweaked version of the release candidate. Apple might make some last minute bug fixes to the RC before sending it out.

How to install the iOS 16 release candidate

If you like the idea of trying out iOS 16 now rather than in a few days, start by going to the webpage for the Apple Beta Software Program. Click the Sign up button, and log in with your Apple ID. You will also need to click Accept on the Beta Software Program Agreement to continue.

How to install the iOS 16 release candidate
Finding the link to Enroll Your Devices is as difficult as joining the Apple Beta Software Program gets.
Image: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

You can then choose which version of Apple’s software you want early access. In this case, you want iOS. Next, tap on Enroll Your Devices.  On the same page, find the beta profile required for your device, then tap the Download profile button. Allow it to be downloaded and installed, then follow these steps:

  1. Open the Settings app on your device.
  2. Tap Profile Downloaded at the top of the screen.
  3. Tap Install.
  4. Restart your iPhone or iPad when prompted.

After your device has booted up again, you can head into Settings, tap General, and then tap Software Update to download and install the iOS 16 release candidate.

Unenroll iPhone from beta program

Once you have the iOS 16 RC installed, you can unenroll your iPhone from Apple’s public beta program. Go to Settings > General > VPN & Device Management and tap the iOS 16 Beta Software Profile. On the resulting screen, tap on Remove Profile.

This won’t remove iOS 16 from your handset. You just won’t receive any future iOS betas. All you’ll get are the same operating system updates everyone else receives.

Enjoy

When you finish, you’ll have iOS 16 on your iPhone and won’t have to worry about installing it on Monday, September 12. Go create yourself a new Lock Screen or two.

And when your friends or coworkers point out that iOS 16 is available, you can say, “Oh, I installed that days days ago.