How to Download the iOS 13, macOS Catalina, and iPadOS Public Betas

The public betas for iOS 13, macOS Catalina, iPadOS, and tvOS 13 are finally available. Here’s a quick recap of how to sign up, and what testers can expect from these beta builds.

How to sign up for and download iOS 13, macOS Catalina, iPadOS, and tvOS

In order to receive access to each beta, you’ll need to sign up to Apple’s Beta Software Progam, which requires an Apple ID (naturally).

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  1. Open the Apple Beta Program page on whatever device you want the beta (and use the Safari browser to make this easy).
  2. Click “Sign up” and use your Apple ID to sign in
  3. Accept the user agreement.
  4. Select the beta you wish to enroll in, then scroll down to the “Get Started” section and click the “enroll you [device]” link.
  5. Apple will give you some additional instructions to follow. The short version: You’ll have to install a beta profile to your device, which will then unlock the beta as a regular Software Update—found within your device’s settings menu.

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What to expect

While these betas only recently became open to the public, the dev community (and Lifehacker readers) have been able to play around with them for a bit longer. If you’re just getting started, we’ve published lots of stories about the latest and greatest features available in iOS 13, macOS Catalina, and iPadOS. (And if you’re interested in how iOS 13 is shaping up against its Google-y competitor, here’s how the iOS 13 and Android Q betas compare.)

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As we always say about installing beta software, these operating systems are still being finalized. You’ll probably run into bugs, glitches, and find that some apps aren’t yet supported. While you probably shouldn’t run the beta on your primary device—especially if you need it to always be operational for, say, your job—the public beta is at least a little bit more stable than the first developer betas for these operating systems. (Not perfect, just better.)

Should you join the public beta, be sure to be a good tester and report any bugs or other feedback through Apple’s Feedback Assistant page (or app). If you’re simply giving the new operating systems a test run, be sure to follow Apple’s backup steps—do not forget to make a backup of your device before you install the beta—so you can undo the updates and keep most of your data intact if you ever want to roll back to iOS 12. (You can also find backup and restore options for iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV in Apple’s beta software program information.)

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How to Enroll in the iOS 13, macOS Catalina, and iPadOS Public Betas

The public betas for iOS 13, macOS Catalina, iPadOS, and tvOS 13 are finally available. Here’s a quick recap of how to sign up, and what testers can expect from these beta builds.

How to sign up for and download iOS 13, macOS Catalina, iPadOS, and tvOS

In order to receive access to each beta, you’ll need to sign up to Apple’s Beta Software Progam, which requires an Apple ID (naturally).

Advertisement

  1. Open the Apple Beta Program page on whatever device you want the beta (and use the Safari browser to make this easy).
  2. Click “Sign up” and use your Apple ID to sign in
  3. Accept the user agreement.
  4. Select the beta you wish to enroll in, then scroll down to the “Get Started” section and click the “enroll you [device]” link.
  5. Apple will give you some additional instructions to follow. The short version: You’ll have to install a beta profile to your device, which will then unlock the beta as a regular Software Update—found within your device’s settings menu.

Advertisement

What to expect

While these betas only recently became open to the public, the dev community (and Lifehacker readers) have been able to play around with them for a bit longer. If you’re just getting started, we’ve published lots of stories about the latest and greatest features available in iOS 13, macOS Catalina, and iPadOS. (And if you’re interested in how iOS 13 is shaping up against its Google-y competitor, here’s how the iOS 13 and Android Q betas compare.)

Advertisement

As we always say about installing beta software, these operating systems are still being finalized. You’ll probably run into bugs, glitches, and find that some apps aren’t yet supported. While you probably shouldn’t run the beta on your primary device—especially if you need it to always be operational for, say, your job—the public beta is at least a little bit more stable than the first developer betas for these operating systems. (Not perfect, just better.)

Should you join the public beta, be sure to be a good tester and report any bugs or other feedback through Apple’s Feedback Assistant page (or app). If you’re simply giving the new operating systems a test run, be sure to follow Apple’s backup steps—do not forget to make a backup of your device before you install the beta—so you can undo the updates and keep most of your data intact if you ever want to roll back to iOS 12. (You can also find backup and restore options for iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV in Apple’s beta software program information.)

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Set Reminders for Emotional ‘Check-Ins’ With Your Partner

Some people are adept at being emotionally present enough with their partner to regularly check in, voice appreciation and send a sweet or funny text just because. And some people are … not.

If you have trouble expressing your emotions to the people you care about most—or you just plain forget to—the solution could be simple: Send yourself a few reminders throughout the day.

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When Chris Welch, an editor at The Verge, jokingly tweeted last week about a marriage counseling app that reminds users to express daily appreciation, text something to make their partner smile or ask about their day, a lot of people responded with variations on actually, this is a good idea.

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As one responder said, “As someone with ADHD, I think this can be very helpful. I think my friends would vouch I am a well-meaning person but my brain has trouble consistently expressing these things.”

It might be helpful, others pointed out, for those who are battling anxiety or depression—or simply those who are not naturally wired to be supportive or present partners but want to get better at it.

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Welch came around, linking followers to the original marriage counseling app, which is called “Lasting.” It’s $11.99 per month, which is kind of steep (but to be fair, it does more than just send you text reminders, and if this is the thing that saves your relationship then, hey, it might be a good deal).

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But you can achieve the same goal (for free) by setting regular calendar reminders on your cell, writing it down as a task if you use a paper planner, or emailing yourself the night before to remind the you of tomorrow morning to work some connection into your day. You can also try a free reminder app, like Alarmed or Any.do.

Remember to switch up the time of day you send that text of appreciation now and then so it doesn’t become too obviously routine.

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‘Mosquito Repellent’ Apps Don’t Work

For decades we’ve been able to buy devices that play noises that are supposed to repel mosquitoes, and for just as many decades they have been completely useless. Now, instead of buying a device, you can now download an app. Guess what? It still won’t work.

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“It’s all wishful thinking. There is no evidence sound emitting devices can stop mosquitoes biting,” mosquito scientist Cameron Webb writes for The Conversation.

And yet both the iTunes and Google Play app stores have dozens of listings for mosquito repellent apps. Some claim to work, while others carry disclaimers like “Important! It has not been scientifically proven that low frequency sounds can help to repel mosquitoes. For this reason, this app should be considered as a joke app.” Another helpfully points out: “You can also [use] this app like a prank to annoying your friends with this sound :)”

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If you want to actually keep mosquitoes away, turn on a fan. The breeze keeps mosquitoes from being able to sniff you out by your breath. For extra protection, apply a bug spray containing an effective ingredient like DEET, picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus. Those—unlike sonic repellent apps—actually work.

WordPress management site WP Engine acquires Flywheel as it moves to a $1B valuation and IPO

WordPress now accounts for 34 percent of all websites globally, and today one of the key companies that helps handle the creation and management of some of those WP-hosted sites is getting a little bigger through some consolidation in the wider ecosystem. WP Engine, which works with businesses to build and manage their WordPress-hosted sites, has aquired Flywheel, a smaller competitor.

Financial terms of the deal are not being disclosed, WP Engine’s CEO and chairperson Heather Brunner said in an interview, but she confirmed to TechCrunch that it involved her company raising a small round (amount also undisclosed) from its existing investors to help finance the deal. WP Engine’s investors include Silver Lake (which last year put a whopping $250 million into the company) along with WordPress developer Automattic, Silverton, GuidePost Growth Equity (formerly known as North Bridge) and Eric Ries (of “Lean Startup” fame).

Brunner also declined to talk valuation of WP Engine, although she noted that current annual recurring revenue is at $132 million, and that Flywheel’s is $18 million, and with a current growth rate of 50%, together the two are on track to make $200 million in ARR by 2020 and likely pass the $1 billion mark for valuation, en route to a public listing.

“It is our aspiration to build a public-ready company, and this acquisition is part of making that happen,” she said. (Ironically, that could mean that WordPress’s partner, and sometimes competitor, could go public before it does.)

The deal is a sign of some consolidation in the ecosystem that has built up around WordPress. WP Engine is a veritable powerhouse in that ecosystem, having been an early mover in the space — WordPress backed it back in 2011 — and now working on building and managing sites for some 120,000 brands and agencies in 150 countries (likely totalling multiples of that in terms of actual sites).

WP Engine, as Brunner describes it, focuses largely on mid-market and larger businesses, while Flywheel — founded and currently based out of Omaha — has focused on smaller businesses. That makes the two natural complements to each other, but Brunner notes that there will be more gained from the union.

“The team there is very product focused,” she noted. “They’ve built a suite that we feel has been focused around small agencies, but they are also the types of tools that larger agencies will benefit from.” She is referring to the product Local by Flywheel, a local development application used by more than 150,000 developers.

Flywheel, founded in 2012, had only raised around $6 million in funding, including a $4 million round several years ago. The economies of scale of throwing in its lot with WP Engine will give it a much wider exposure and access to new customers.

“We founded Flywheel with the belief that in order to help creatives do their best work, we needed to create an internal culture that encourages our employees to do the same,” said Dusty Davidson, CEO and co-founder of Flywheel, in a statement. “That philosophy has led us to build an incredible company and some of the most well-loved products in WordPress, supported by an impressive group of talented people and the most remarkable open source community in the world.”

WP Engine has made a few other acquisitions prior to this, of other partners in the WordPress ecosystem, marking it out as a consolidator in the field. Brunner noted that while some of the company’s growth efforts might lead it to further acquisitions, it is also pursuing a second track of working with third party partners and acting as the intermediary platform for companies to bring in other services in aid of running their sites. Partners in the WP Engine ecosystem — alongside WordPress itself, of course — include Amazon Web Services, Cloudflare, Google, HubSpot and New Relic, she noted.

Reminder: Meet TechCrunch in NYC tomorrow

And we’re back! TechCrunch is returning to NYC for a Meet and Greet tomorrow at The Yard in Herald Square. It’s been a couple years since we’ve held an event in NYC and we’ve missed it.

Join Managing Editor Jordan Crook, Battlefield Host and Senior Writer Anthony Ha, Head of Startup Battlefield Neesha Tambe, and Hardware Editor Brian Heater on Tuesday, June 25th from 5:00pm – 6:15pm. From ExtraCrunch, our new subscription tier, to Startup Battlefield, TC’s world renowned startup launch competition, learn more about the new things at TechCrunch. You’ll have an opportunity to meet investors, startup founders and other folks in the startup community as well.

TechCrunch is actively searching for the next best startups to feature in Startup Battlefield this fall at Disrupt San Francisco and Hardware Battlefield in Shenzhen, China. If you are an investor or community manager for early stage startups, join us tomorrow evening to refer your companies. Early stage founders are invited to attend and learn more about Startup Battlefield. Founders of later stage startups are encouraged to come and network with TechCrunch Editorial at the event.

TechCrunch New York Meet and Greet

Host: The Yard – Herald Square

Time: 5:00pm – 6:15pm

Location: 106 W 32nd St, New York, NY 10001

RSVPThe event is free, but you will need a ticket to attend

You’re a Fool If You Don’t Grill Carrots

Photo: Claire Lower

I don’t know if carrots (as a whole) are underrated or overrated, but I do know that grilled carrots are almost criminally overlooked. Yes, it’s hard to compete with grilled corn, but a grilled carrot is a smoky, sweet, and charred miracle and I am here to demand that you pay attention to them.

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Carrots have a lot of sugar in them, and charred, almost burnt sugar tastes very good. The dark smokiness imparted by the grill (or grill pan) gives all that sweetness something to play off of, creating a perfectly balanced, extremely summery, friendly-to-every-diet side dish. Besides carrots, all you need here is olive oil and salt. You could make a dipping sauce, or drizzle on some chimichurri, but I don’t know why you’d want to create more work for yourself. To make these salty, sweet, smoky delights, you will need:

  • One bunch of carrots, rainbow if you can find them
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt

Remove any tops, then scrub or peel your carrots, and slice them in half lengthwise, unless they are teeny tiny babies, in which case you can leave them whole. Place them in a big bowl, drizzle on the oil, add two pinches of salt and toss everything together. Heat your grill (or grill pan) over medium high heat. Place the carrots on the grates, and cook for 15-20 minutes, turning every five minutes or so, until they are nice and charred and can be easily pierced with a fork. Serve as a simple side, and make more than you think you need, as any leftovers will make an excellent addition to cold salads. (Do not however, serve them as hot dogs—that’s disrespectful to both carrots and hot dogs.)

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Pick Up Equal Exchange Coffee For About $3

Best Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.   

Equal Exchange Mind Body Soul Blend Organic Coffee Bean (12 oz.) | $3 | Amazon

Order a few bags of Equal Exchange coffee for $3, right now. I can’t stress enough how good of a deal this is, and how quickly it’ll go away. Choose from the Mind Body Soul and the Love Buzz blend. Seriously, don’t think. Just click, baby. These usually sell for around $10.


What’s the Best Shower Caddy?

It’s been four years since we last asked our readers about their favorite shower caddies, so nearly 1,500 days and (hopefully) about as many showers later, we figured it was time to lather, rinse, and repeat.

Check out the rules below, then head down to the comments to nominate your pick.

1) Your nomination should contain the name of a specific shower caddy, why you think it’s the best, a link where it can be purchased, and an image.

2) You can nominate multiple products, but please put each one in a separate comment.

3) Vote by starring someone else’s nomination.

4) Please do not duplicate nominations.


AirPower Is Dead, Long Live This $32 Dual Qi Charger

Best Tech DealsThe best tech deals from around the web, updated daily.   

We’re entering a world where people own and use multiple devices that can charge wirelessly. Obviously, your phone. Increasingly, your earbuds. For some of us, even our computer mouse. So, yes, there’s a case to be made for a dual-charging Qi pad, and this one’s on sale for $32 after you clip the $5 coupon and use promo code KBXDNH76 at checkout.

It includes a Quick Charge 3.0 adapter in the box, it has five coils for flexible device placement, it supports high-speed 7.5W iPhone Qi charging, and <slaps top of Qi pad> this baby’s even topped with only the finest (PU) leather.