iOS 16.1 beta begins testing new iPhone features

iOS 16.1 beta begins testing new iPhone features

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iOS 16.1 beta begins testing new iPhone features
iOS 16.1 beta 1 is out for developers to test.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Apple seeded the first beta of iOS 16.1 to developers on Wednesday. This signals the start of testing for some iPhone features Apple already announced but didn’t debut in iOS 16.

This includes Clean Energy Charging. And there’s good news for some iPhones that couldn’t display battery percentage in the Status Bar.

Moving ahead with iOS 16.1

Apple released iOS 16 on Monday, bringing a lengthy list of enhancements, including a dramatically improved Lock Screen and many new features in the Messages and Mail apps.

But there are quite a few iPhone features announced at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in June 2022 that aren’t in the initial version. The new iOS 16.1 beta is an opportunity for Apple to start testing these before release.

To be clear, it’s not guaranteed that all these new features will be in version 16.1. Some might be delayed until later updates. Beta 1 has just been seeded to developers, so there’s been no time to determine all the differences yet.

But it already has been confirmed that the initial beta includes Clean Energy Charging. And it adds the battery percentage to the status bar of the iPhone 13 mini, one of the devices that can’t do this trick with iOS 16.

The prerelease version is not recommended for beta testers who are ready to take their iPhone out of the beta testing program. They should unenroll their handset from the Apple Beta Software Program now and not install version 16.1.

Other new Apple betas

iOS 16.1 beta 1 isn’t the only prerelease version introduced by Apple on Wednesday. The company also seeded watchOS 9.1 and tvOS 16.1 to developers at the same time.

iPadOS 16.1 beta 8 went to devs, too. That’s the first update in three weeks for the iPad operating system scheduled for release on October. iOS 16.1 almost certainly will launch at the same time as the iPad update.