Tag - Beta
In a bid to boost the discoverability of new apps, Apple announced earlier that it would launch a test program for Search Ads, a forthcoming feature to the App Store that offers -- for the first time -- paid promotions on one of Apple's storefronts. Previously, Apple staffers have picked items to received promoted status at will, resisting efforts at putting advertising in the search results for fear that big players would dominate and further obscure up-and-coming, smaller, and new releases.
TestFlight, Apple's platform for developers to try out their apps in a group beta test, has been updated to support the operating system changes announced by the company earlier this week at WWDC. Following after the release of the developer beta of the company's operating systems, Apple has upgraded TestFlight to work with apps created for the iOS 10, tvOS 10, and watchOS 3 betas, including new features announced during the developer conference.
As expected, Apple on Tuesday released the public-tester versions of its latest OS X and iOS betas -- the second round of 10.11.6 and 9.3.3 betas for testing. The two betas, now available to pre-registered public testers, offer no notable changes or major bug fixes, but instead focus on minor bugs, security enhancements, and performance or interface tweaks. Apple on Monday released developer versions of the updates, as well as developer-only betas for tvOS 9.2.2 and watchOS 2.2.2.
With just one week to go before its major Worldwide Developers Conference that is -- among other things -- expected to show off the next major upgrades to OS X, iOS, and various other software (and potentially hardware) items, Apple has released second betas of OS X 10.11.6, iOS 9.3.3, and tvOS 9.2.2, along with a first beta of watchOS 2.2.2 for developers, with public-tester versions of the OS X and iOS betas expected to arrive tomorrow. While no user-facing changes have yet been revealed, each beta brings with it small tweaks and changes to improve stability, performance, and security.
On Monday, Apple seeded to registered developers the first betas for new updates to OS X, iOS, and tvOS. The latest updates begin their beta cycles just weeks before Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference, and could conceivably be released on or around that conference, which is expected to offer a sneak preview of the next major upgrades of OS X and iOS, respectively known as OS X 10.12 (though the "OS X" nomenclature may well be dropped in favor of simply "macOS" or "MacOS") and iOS 10.
[Update: added detail to iOS 9.3.2 beta] On Wednesday, Apple issued the second developer beta for OS X 10.11.5, iOS 9.3.2, watchOS 2.2.1, and tvOS 9.2.1, all coming two weeks after the previous betas. The updates are all bereft of any immediately-obvious changes, though some notable tweaks may be discovered later by testers. As with this entire update cycle, the focus with the releases has been on bug fixes and performance and stability improvements. One significant improvement in the iOS 9.3.2 is a possible fix for a long-standing Game Center bug that sometimes results in a blank screen, preventing users from playing the games involved.
Breaking with the recent tradition of multiple beta releases on one day, Apple has released a new version of OS X 10.11.4. Beta 7 of the forthcoming OS X patch is now available only to developers, eschewing last week's developer and public release on the same day, at least for now.
Following the release on Monday of the sixth betas for OS X 10.11.4, iOS 9.3, and watchOS 2.2, Apple has now released a sixth (developer only) beta of tvOS for the fourth-generation Apple TV. No reason was given for the delay, and the latest beta's build number is 13Y5232a. The forthcoming update, expected later this month, brings a few new features to the developer operating system, including support for home-screen folders, a redesigned app switcher, restored support for Bluetooth keyboards, and more.
On Monday, Apple updated its various OS platforms to a sixth developer beta for most of its respective systems, with public-tester betas of OS X 10.11.4 and iOS 9.3 also seeded simultaneously. As usual, Apple has not listed any notable changes from the previous beta, though small updates, tweaks and other changes are usually reported by developers over the first few days in the process of testing. While small "fit and finish" issues are often the most notable changes, the focus of all the betas is concentrated on fixing bugs.