Everything you need to know about iOS 12

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The official iOS 12 release date is next week, but you can download it now.
You've got iOS 12. Here's how to make the most of it.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

iOS 12 is out now, and you probably already downloaded it and installed it on your device. But what does the new version of iOS actually do? Apple introduced Screen Time, the great new Do Not Disturb, and the powerful Siri Shortcuts at the WWDC 2018 keynote in June. But until you dig into them, you won’t have an idea how great these new features are, along with many more.

There are also plenty of tweaks to Safari, some great new security features, Bedtime and even a couple of new Apple apps (on the iPad at least).

Here’s everything you need to know about iOS 12 and how to take advantage of all its new features.

You won’t believe how many people are using Apple beta software

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notification centre iOS 12
Have you upgraded early to iOS 12?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple warns us that its beta releases should not be installed on our primary devices. Until just a few years ago, it only allowed registered developers to download them. But that doesn’t stop keen Apple fans from updating early to get their hands on its latest features.

You won’t believe how many people are already running the next versions of macOS, iOS, tvOS, watchOS months before their public debut.

iOS 11.4 public beta arrives with AirPlay 2

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Apple HomePod smart speaker
AirPlay 2.0 makes HomePod even better.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

HomePod owners no longer need to be a developer to test AirPlay 2.

Apple seeded the first public beta of iOS 11.4 to testers today, allowing anyone who signs up for the beta testing program to play with some of the new features coming out later this spring.

Apple Pay Cash finally arrives in iOS 11.2 public beta 2

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Apple Pay
You can now send friends money via iMessage.
Photo: Apple

The future of digital payments has finally arrived on the iPhone. Sort of.

Apple’s new peer-to-peer payments system called Apple Pay Cash is finally rolling out to public beta testers today with the release of the public beta for iOS 11.2 beta 2 and watchOS 4.2 beta 2, giving iPhone and iPad users the ability to send money to each other electronically.

Apple’s big batch of betas is ready for public testers

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iOS 11
The new Control Center is just one of many great new iOS 11 features.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The first big beta update for iOS 11 is already available to the public, just one day after Apple seeded the new beta build to developers.

iOS 11.1 beta 1 can now be installed on iPhones and iPads by public testers and comes with other big updates for tvOS 11 and macOS High Sierra.

Download the latest iOS 11 public beta now

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iPhone 7 iOS 11
A redesigned Control Center is one of many changes to look forward to in iOS 11.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Just one day after developers received the fifth beta build of iOS 11, Apple has released the same beta update to public testers, bringing a number of UI changes and bug fixes with it.

iOS 11 public beta 4 and macOS High Sierra public beta 4 are now available to download for all members of Apple’s public beta software testing program. You can also download the new software directly to your Mac, iPhone or iPad if you have the previous public beta installed.

How to install iOS 11 public beta on your iPhone or iPad

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iOS 11 public beta
Now you can test out drag-and-drop, and all the other goodies in iOS 11.
Photo: Apple

Just three weeks after presenting iOS 11, and making the first iOS 11 betas available to developers, Apple has released a public beta of the next iPad and iPhone operating system. That means that anyone, including you, can sign up, download and run iOS 11 public beta on your iPhone or iPad. Doing so is super easy. Here’s how: