Apple releases iOS 17 beta 4 to developers, here’s the news

This article covers a developing story. Keep checking back with us as we will add more information as it becomes available.

After months of speculation and anticipation, iOS 17 beta 1 was released to developers during WWDC23. And as our hands-on reveals, iOS 17 is a bit of a minor update, especially if you don’t actively rely on iMessage and FaceTime to communicate with your social circle. Despite this, however, there are still many small additions to the system, and Apple keeps introducing more with each new beta release. So, now that iOS 17 beta 4 is available to Apple Developer Program members, it’s time to delve into this build and look at the changes and new features it potentially packs.

What’s new in iOS 17 beta 4

We are currently testing and analyzing this build on the latest iPhones available. We will update this article as we discover new offers and changes, so please be sure to revisit and update this page from time to time. In the meantime, you might want to take a look at Apple’s official release notes, where the company typically highlights the bugs, glitches, and fixes included in a given beta release.

Beta 3

More detailed credits in Apple Music

iOS 17 beta 3 introduces a dedicated song credits button in the Apple Music app. When you tap it, you can see a clean list of composers and songwriters, as well as the actual lyrics and available audio quality.

New splash screens

iOS 17 beta 3 also includes two new home screens in the built-in Home and Podcasts apps. When you first launch these applications after the update, you get a summary preview of the new features included in them.

Dynamic Photos app icon in iMessage

iOS 17 beta 3

Also, when upgrading to iOS 17 beta 3, you may notice that the Photos app in iMessage now shows the thumbnail of the last photo added to your library. This icon changes as you add more photos to your camera roll. Prior to this beta build, it displayed a generic, static image.

Beta 2

Tap to AirDrop

Tap to AirDrop on iOS 17 beta 2

When trying to AirDrop an item on iOS 17 beta 2, the interface now mentions that you can bring two iPhones close together to initiate the transfer. The feature was first announced during WWDC and was apparently missing in beta 1.

Fitness section in Settings

Fitness settings in iOS 17 beta 2

In the Settings app on iOS 17 beta 2, there is a new section dedicated to the Fitness app. There users can check some of the app’s permissions and see how their data is handled.

Touch-ups in standby

Standby settings in iOS 17 beta 2

iOS 17 beta 1 introduced Standby mode for the first time. Beta 2 now adds a new toggle in the standby settings, allowing you to optionally disable non-critical notifications. That way, regular notifications don’t take over your screen when you’re in this mode.

Crossfade in Apple Music

crossfade in Apple Music on iOS 17 beta 2

iOS 17 beta 1 introduced a Crossfade toggle in the Music settings. When you enable it, however, the Settings app crashes and users would no longer have a way to access the Music section. Fortunately, iOS 17 beta 2 fixes this bug and introduces a slider, which lets you choose the number of seconds for the crossfade feature.

Software Update Changes

iOS 17 beta 2

When upgrading to iOS 17 beta 2 from beta 1, you’ll notice an updated software update settings page with the more prominent Update Now and Update Tonight buttons.

iOS 17 focuses on updates to the Messages, Phone, and FaceTime apps. With this release, users can create and set up contact posters, exchange their contact cards more easily via NameDrop, use new FaceTime reactions and effects, as well as being able to share stickers in new ways.

In addition to communication upgrades, users of this version can take advantage of Standby mode, which turns compatible iPhones into a kind of smart display while charging in landscape orientation. Not to mention the Apple Journal app, which will debut later this year via an iOS 17.x update.

If you are interested in this release, you can install iOS 17 beta on your compatible iPhone by following the steps in our guide. Alternatively, you could wait for the stable, public version, which is expected to be released in the fall. Keep in mind, however, that early beta builds are often buggy and unstable. So unless you’re okay with this, you might want to avoid installing pre-releases on your daily driver.

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