Apple releases second iOS 9 and OS X public betas with tweaks and bug fixes

23 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Apple prevents beta testers from punishing developers with bad App Store reviews.

What’s new: Apple brought back Home Sharing in the second public beta of iOS 9, which means you can stream your iTunes library on any Apple device on your Wi-Fi network.Until now, iPhone and iPad owners running pre-release software have been able to moan about these unexplained crashes and random restarts via Apple’s App Store review system.File this under notable PSA: Apple just implemented a change that prevents users with devices running its latest iOS beta (that’s iOS 9 right now) from leaving reviews in the App Store.Apple upset a significant portion of its user base (case in point: the excellent email below) when it disabled Home Sharing for iOS devices in iOS 8.4.

App makers typically focus on optimizing their software for the latest commercial release of Apple’s operating system — currently iOS 8.4 — and then make the necessary updates and changes as a new major iOS update approaches every fall. This is a sensible and wholly logical move since beta versions of iOS are works in progress which may affect or break certain parts of a developer’s app without that developer initially being either aware, at fault, or able to provide a fix. But as Apple Insider notes, Apple has inexplicably allowed iOS beta users to publish reviews in years past, when the pool of testers was mostly limited to app developers and hardcore enthusiasts.

Apple opened the beta program for iOS to the public (with some stipulations) for the first time this year, having previously kept its in-development software strictly for those with a developer account. The reinstatement isn’t really a surprise — Apple VP Eddy Cue had publicly promised to bring back the feature before; most likely, it was disabled while Apple hashed out an agreement with music labels.

This is detrimental to developers because users running the current version of iOS wouldn’t necessarily experience crashes or other problems associated with less stable beta software. The software allows those plucky enough to download it to take Apple’s new Maps app for a spin, along with the revamped multitasking menu, Notes app, Proactive Siri and Split View for iPad. µ This month, Mac Stories expressed concern that increasing numbers of beta users are able to leave reviews — and, in particular, negative ones — so it’s good to see that Apple is listening and reacting. Now that Apple has opened iOS 9 to public testing, users who are not developers might not be as familiar with beta software problems and have left critical reviews of apps based on their iOS 9 experiences.

If you were waiting for the beta to become more stable before trying it out, then you’ll need to follow our iOS 9 beta guide or our El Capitan public beta guide to put the new software on your machines.

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