Install AirPods beta

How to install AirPods Pro beta and try out the new Adaptive Audio feature

Apple unveiled its exciting new Adaptive Audio feature for AirPods Pro 2 in June that blends adaptive transparency with active noise cancellation and more. However, testing the feature is a bit more involved than simply installing the iOS 17 beta. Here’s how to install the AirPods beta to try out the great new features.

As an update, here’s how Apple describes the new feature for AirPods Pro 2 (all other AirPods don’t get this feature, not even AirPods Max):

Adaptive audio dynamically blends transparency and active noise cancellation to personalize the noise control experience as you move through changing environments and interactions throughout the day.

Also included with the new feature are two other features called Conversation Awareness and Custom Volume.

My 9to5Mac teammates and I tested the feature and we were all really impressed. Adaptive Audio offers an extremely smooth automatic transition between noise cancellation, transparency and volume down/up that feels like magic.

But as it happens, you don’t automatically get the AirPods Pro beta when you install the iOS 17 developer beta on your iPhone (there are a few more steps to the process). And its not available at all with the iOS 17 public beta.

But luckily, Apple has made all the tools available to anyone with an Apple ID to try out the AirPods Pro 2 beta with free access to the Apple Developer account.

How to install AirPods beta

Please note that the main new feature in this beta, Adaptive Audio, is only available with AirPods Pro 2 and as this is a developer beta, install at your own risk.

  1. To start, you will iOS 17 developer beta required on your iPhone (full guide here)
  2. Now check if you can enable Developer Mode by going to your iPhone’s iOS 17 Settings > Privacy & Security > Developer Mode (look down) if it’s not there, continue with step 2if it is present, turn it on e go to step 12
  3. Go to the Apple developer website on your Mac (Ventura 13.3 or later) and sign in for free with your Apple ID
  4. Under Program resourceslook on the right side and choose Software downloads
  5. In the upper right corner, click Applications
  6. Under Xcode 15 betachoose View downloads
  7. Now click Show detailsyou can uncheck iOS 17
  8. Click the blue download button Xcode 15 beta and selected platforms
  9. Once downloaded, open the Xcode_15_beta.xip file
  10. Now open Xcode 15 beta
  11. Connect your iPhone running iOS 17 to your Mac
  12. On your iPhone, open the Settings app
    • You shouldn’t need to download the iOS 17 simulator
  13. Choose Privacy and security > scroll down and Tap Developer Mode
  14. Activate it and follow the steps to restart your iPhone
  15. After restarting, make sure you do tap Activate
  16. Now go back to Settings on iPhone > choose Developer (under TV Provider)
  17. Scroll down and under Test AirPods tap Pre-release beta firmware
  18. Tap the switch next to your AirPods Pro 2
  19. Apple says “firmware updates will install when your AirPods are in their charging case and near this iPhone

Unfortunately, you can’t force install the AirPods beta update, but you can control when it installs automatically by going to Bluetooth or at the top of iOS Settings > tap AirPods Pro 2.

You will know you have the beta when AirPods Pro 2 updates from 5E135 to build 6A238h OR 6A262d (mine took about 30 minutes to install automatically).

Once you’re done, you can read our guide on how to turn on adaptive audio and how it works in this guide:

Here’s what the process to install AirPods beta looks like:

Choose Software Downloads on Apple’s developer website:

install AirPods beta 1

Now click on Application in the upper right corner:

install AirPods beta 2

You will now see Xcode 15 beta, choose View Downloads:

install AirPods beta 3

Now click View Details, you can uncheck iOS 17 beta to reduce the download size.

Open Xcode_15_beta.xip and then you can start Xcode beta.

install AirPods beta 4

With Xcode 15 beta open on your Mac, connect your iPhone running iOS 17, no need to create a new project or do anything else.

With your iPhone connected to your Mac, open iOS Settings > Privacy & Security > Developer Mode (bottom).

Follow the prompts to restart your iPhone, when done, make sure you choose “Activate”.

Now go back to Settings > Developer > Pre-Release Beta Firmware:

In my case, my AirPods Pro 2 got updated to beta firmware about 30 minutes after I flipped the switch:

Thanks for reading our guide on how to install AirPods beta!

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