How to download the iOS 18 beta on your iPhone

Apple lifted the lid on iOS 18 at WWDC 2024, and although the company’s AI-packed software update isn’t expected to roll out to the best iPhones until later this year, you can take an early version of iOS 18 for a test drive if you’re willing to jump through a few hoops.

The first iOS 18 beta was made available to members of Apple’s paid Developer Program right after the company’s WWDC 2024 keynote on June 10, so if you’re already enrolled, read on to find out how to download the iOS 18 beta on your iPhone. If you’re not already signed up to the program, we’ve also detailed the steps you need to take to do so.

Bear in mind, though, that early versions of iOS 18 are likely to feature plenty of bugs (they’re intended for developers, after all). A more streamlined version of the iOS 18 beta will likely roll out to the public sometime in July, while the full version looks set to debut alongside the iPhone 16 line in September.

How to download the iOS 18 beta on your iPhone

Apple unveiled iOS 18 at WWDC 2024 in June (Image credit: Apple)

To download and install the iOS 18 developer beta, you’ll need to sign up to the Apple Developer program. You can do so by visiting the company’s enrollment page, signing in with your Apple ID – you’ll need to have two-factor authentication activated – and entering your payment information. Enrollment costs $99 / £79 per year (or your local currency equivalent where available), though certain organizations are eligible for a fee waiver.

Once you’re an official developer, go to the Apple Developer site on your iPhone, log into your account using your Apple ID, and agree to any terms and conditions that appear. Then navigate to the Downloads page. If you joined the program properly, developer beta downloads should appear for iOS 18.

Next, go to Settings > General > Software Update. The iOS 18 beta should appear there automatically. Once it shows up, tap Install and it will start to download.

In a few moments – and potentially after a couple of restarts – you’ll have an early version of iOS 18 on your iPhone. Do keep in mind, though, that Apple’s iOS 18 betas are likely to cause slowdowns and crashes, at least to begin with.

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As alluded to earlier, if you’re not already signed up to Apple’s Developer Program – and you don’t want to fork out the fee needed to change that – then wait for the free iOS 18 public beta, which Apple has confirmed will release sometime in July.

Which phones are compatible with iOS 18? To download iOS 18 on your iPhone, you’ll need an iPhone XS or newer (that’s any iPhone with the A12 Bionic chip or newer). Incidentally, that’s also the same device requirements as iOS 17.

The full list of iOS 18-compatible iPhones is as follows:

iPhone 15 Plus

iPhone 15 Pro

iPhone 15 Pro Max

iPhone 14

iPhone 14 Plus

iPhone 14 Pro

iPhone 14 Pro Max

iPhone 13

iPhone 13 mini

iPhone 13 Pro

iPhone 13 Pro Max

iPhone 12

iPhone 12 mini

iPhone 12 Pro

iPhone 12 Pro Max

iPhone 11

iPhone 11 Pro

iPhone 11 Pro Max

iPhone XS

iPhone XS Max

iPhone XR

iPhone SE (2nd generation)

iPhone SE (3rd generation)

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