At this year's WWDC Apple announced that like OS X Yosemite, OS X El Capitan would go through a period where public betas were available to a certain group of consumers in order to receive feedback about stability and features. What was also announced is that iOS 9 would also have a public beta. Consumers have long installed developer betas of iOS to try out new features, but the public beta for iOS 9 marks the first time that consumers have been officially invited to test out Apple's mobile operating system.

Before installing either of the betas, Apple recommends that users back up their iOS devices to iCloud or their PC, and their Mac to a Time Machine drive. Much like last year, installing the public beta for OS X El Capitan involves entering a redemption code in the Mac App Store in order to add the beta as an item to your list of purchased software. The installer for OS X El Capitan will then begin downloading automatically. Since it's a full OS upgrade, the installer weighs in at about 6GB.

As for the brand new iOS betas, users will have to install a configuration profile which allows their device to receive the beta updates from Apple. Users will have to agree to an agreement which essentially states that iOS 9 is a beta and things may break or have problems. After accepting, the device must be rebooted. Once all that is done the updates will become available over the air just like any other iOS update. For reference, the first public beta OTA update for the iPhone 5s is 1.4GB in size.

To enroll in the OS X El Capitan and iOS 9 betas users need to join the Apple Beta Software Program. The site is quite slow at the moment due to an influx of users, so it might be worth waiting a little bit if you haven't enrolled in the program already.

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  • tipoo - Thursday, July 9, 2015 - link

    Every time, I'm like, ok, lesson learned, I'll wait for a few revisions after the stable release. And each time, I find myself installing betas the hour after I think such reasonable thoughts

    Heck, the fourth official revision of Yosemite is still bothering me with bugs...And yet...
  • freeskier93 - Thursday, July 9, 2015 - link

    Even reading the issues with iOS 9 beta and warnings not to install it for daily use (who wouldn't this apply to for public beta testers?) I still can't help myself. Will be installing El Capitain when I get home.
  • tipoo - Thursday, July 9, 2015 - link

    I've also rocked every Windows dev preview since Vista...Nothing's ever gone *horribly* wrong, so why not keep taking chances until it does :P
  • Samus - Friday, July 10, 2015 - link

    Other than the low power mode and the new task manager interface (it's getting closer and closer to WebOS!) I don't see a really compelling reason to jump on iOS9 unless you have an iPad where there are real features added, such as multi-window apps.

    All the new apps in iOS9 are basically useless right now because the content isn't finished being developed for them yet, such as the News app.
  • tipoo - Friday, July 10, 2015 - link

    Nah, just meant OSX.
  • iWatchHogwash - Saturday, July 11, 2015 - link

    Other Apple news not mentioned here:

    Apple Watch sales fall by 90 per cent

    Apple has another lemon

    It is turning out exactly as we said – sales of Apple's latest cure for cancer have slumped to a shadow of their initial "glory."

    While the Tame Apple Press and a big chunk of analysts sung praises for the iWatch, claiming it would sell 70 million in its first year. We pointed out that the gizmo was nearly two years out of date and lacked most of the software which would make it moderately useful and if it succeed it was a triumph of user stupidity and marketing.

    Lately analysts have been slowly withdrawing the enthusiastic sales figures they gave the watch, and now a new survey has shown that sales have fallen by 90 per cent.

    Apple is selling fewer than 20,000 watches a day in the US since the initial surge in April, and on some days fewer than 10,000. This is not too bad, but it does suggest that most people who wanted an iWatch have one, and existing users are not managing to win many converts amongst their friends to make it take off. For the record to make the 70 million figure apple would have to sell 195,000 a day.

    Data collected by Slice Intelligence show that Two-thirds of the watches sold so far have been the lower-profit "Sport" version, whose price starts at $349, according to Slice, rather than the costlier and more advanced models that start at $549. Apple's gold "Edition" model priced at $10,000 or more has only sold 2,000 of them have been sold in the US.

    The figures are based on the electronic receipts sent to millions of email addresses following purchases. The company conducts market research on behalf of consumer-goods companies, among others, many of them in the Fortune 500.

    All up though these figures are not bad, but they are not the sort of numbers which Apple needs to convince its investors that it can make mega sales any more. With sales drying up in China, Jobs mob will not have a good bottom line this year.

  • WinterCharm - Monday, July 13, 2015 - link

    The watch was always an accessory.

    Wearables aren't ready for wide public use yet - they don't DO anything smartphones don't already do.
  • WinterCharm - Monday, July 13, 2015 - link

    If you always have backups, nothing will ever go that catastrophically wrong :P
  • Kevin G - Thursday, July 9, 2015 - link

    For correlation, how much alcohol was consumed between the period of reasonable thoughts and the realizing the beta installer is running?
  • jjj - Thursday, July 9, 2015 - link

    Funny how every minor thing Apple or Microsoft do gets coverage (often excessively extensive) but everything else barely gets noticed at AT.
    The new Android M dev preview today doesn't get to matter as opposed to Office for Mac or a iOS beta, after all Android is just 5 times bigger than iOS and they release 3 times fewer versions of betas lol.

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