Apple’s beta program for iOS 16.5, iPadOS 16.5, macOS 13.4, watchOS 9.5, and tvOS 16.5 continues with new versions of them all now available for download.
It’s now likely only a matter of weeks before the updates are all released to the public, but those who are registered developers or are on the public beta can download these releases today.
As has become the norm of late there aren’t any big changes this time around, although that doesn’t mean that there are no changes whatsoever. Let’s dive in.
iOS 16.5 & iPadOS 16.5
While not a huge change, iOS 16.5 does include a new wallpaper section for LGBTQ+ wallpapers under the Pride banner. There are no new wallpapers as such, but the previous Pride wallpaper is present and correct. Now it’s just under a new heading which suggests that there are more wallpapers en route.
Nothing new has been spotted so far but previous changes remain. They include a new Sports tab in the Apple News app as well as the ability to begin a screen recording using Siri for the first time.
Apple is unlikely to make too many changes to iOS 16.5 from here on out as it gets ready for iOS 17 and the iPhone 15 lineup. That model and Apple’s future best iPhone the iPhone 15 Pro are likely to be announced in September.
There’s nothing big to talk about in terms of macOS 13.4 and the only real change we’ve come across in any of the previous betas is the removal of the need for profiles when accessing beta releases.
Just like Apple’s other platforms, macOS now allows people to sign in using their Apple ID and access any betas they’re eligible for without any additional work.
It’s a similar story on the Apple Watch with watchOS 9.5 seemingly only doing one thing — ditching the developer beta profiles entirely.
The result is that people will again need to be signed in using a beta-worthy Apple ID in order to download betas in the future, stopping people from getting their hands on them when they shouldn’t.
Installing betas on Apple watches has always been a risky business because downgrading is simply impossible. Anything that stops people from installing betas when they could cause themselves problems is probably a good thing.
Apple isn’t often very forthcoming when it comes to sharing details about tvOS updates. In terms of beta 4 there doesn’t appear to be much going on that’s new, but the earlier betas did add support for watching multiple sports streams at the same time.
That’s a huge deal, with MLS and MLB watchers likely already licking their lips at the thought of the Apple TV app showing them multiple games all at once.
Realistically, it’s tvOS 17 where the biggest new features are likely to come from.
What comes next?
The expectation is that Apple won’t make many more changes to its current software while it works on getting iOS 17, iPadOS 17, macOS 14, watchOS 10, and tvOS 17 ready for WWDC23 in June.
With that in mind, it’s likely that we should expect things to quieten down from here on out, with all the real fun being in the post-WWDC betas.
If Apple follows its previous schedule we can expect developers to be given the first betas of the new software immediately following the June 5 WWDC keynote. A few weeks later Apple will likely make the public beta versions available, with the final releases set to happen in or around September. Just when those new iPhones and refreshed Apple Watches are likely to drop as well.