PSA: Don't install iOS 11 beta on your main iPhone unless you hate yourself

Posted:
in iPhone edited June 2017
Every year, Apple debuts a new version of iOS in beta form. Every year, you get excited and want to test it before it's ready for public consumption. Every year, you will regret doing so.




The first beta of iOS 11 launched on Monday for iPhone and iPad (and the sixth-generation iPod touch as well, if we're being thorough). It's pretty neat!
AppleInsider staff uses iOS 11 on older, secondary, or nonessential device -- because it crashes.
It's also not ready for primetime.

Every year, AppleInsider sees the horror stories from near-sighted users who, in a moment of pure excitement over a software overhaul, regrettably installed a new beta on their iPhone. "How do I downgrade?" they want to know.

The first beta of iOS 11 is, thus far, for developers only. A public beta will launch later this month, and perhaps that version will be less buggy, but you should still wait.

AppleInsider staff has been testing iOS 11 for a few days, and all of us have installed it on older, secondary, or nonessential devices. For good reason -- it crashes.

Just today, my iPhone randomly reset as I was removing items from Control Center for a story. Inexplicably, my 12.9-inch iPad Pro actually loses power when it's charging on my Logitech Smart Connector dock. Copy and paste is completely nonfunctional on my iPhone 6s. 3D Touch to invoke app switcher does not work at all.

All of this is fine. It's a beta. I was prepared.

Most users who haphazardly install betas, however, don't seem to realize or expect this. And then they're in a world of hurt when their iPhone becomes problematic to the point of being potentially unusable.




Things are a little better on the Mac. There, you could install macOS 10.13 High Sierra to a partition, and keep your regular macOS 10.12 Sierra install separate and buttery smooth. If you know how to do that (and you have a developer account required for the first beta), have fun playing around.

You'd better put it on a partition, too. We're using a 2015 MacBook Pro to test it out, and we had to pull the drive and format it in an external enclosure on a machine without the beta installed to recover the drive after a particularly nasty crash. For now, that machine is fine, but we're keeping a wary eye on it.

Things are way worse on the Apple Watch. There, you simply cannot downgrade from the watchOS 4 beta to watchOS 3. If your watch gives you problems and you want to roll back the software, you have to actually mail it in to Apple and get it replaced. Just don't.

Whether you're eyeing iOS 11, macOS High Sierra, or watchOS 4, please take our word for it and do not install it on a mission-critical machine intended for everyday use. You'll regret it.

If you made the shameful mistake of updating to iOS 11 already on your primary iPhone, and you inevitably regret your decision and want to roll it back to iOS 10, you can visit ipsw.me and find your model number to download the appropriate install file. Then you'll need to disable Find My iPhone, put your device into DFU mode, and queue up iTunes on your Mac or PC to select "Restore and Update," installing the latest publicly available version of iOS.

But really, don't let it come to that. Because now you know better.
dysamoria
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 66
    Excellent advice.  And if you are really risk averse, don't jump on the next OS the first day it gets released out of beta.  But we all knew that already and will have a harder time avoiding that temptation.
    pscooter63dysamoriaDeelronnetmage
  • Reply 2 of 66
    razormaidrazormaid Posts: 299member
    This is BS. I have it running on my 2016 Touch Bar laptop, 2011 17” laptop, 2 2011 iMacs, 3 iPads (mini, large pro and smaller pro), 2 iPhone 7+, TV4 and 2 Watches series 2.

    We have not encountered anything yet. In fact I was just talking to my business partner saying “they must have had this done & sitting around waiting for awhile because I don’t recall a “beta 1” feeling and running so “done” feeling across so many platforms. 

    TV is the star here by the way. Really nice changes to the interface. Much better. Much easier. 

    The only thing i can I can think of as to why someone MIGHT run into problems - if any - would be if they did a “rape & scrape” (that’s what we call reformatting a device or computer) and installing from scratch. I don’t know why someone would do that but since we DONT do that, all I can say is running it like an update resulting in a smooth running cross platform update. 
    edited June 2017 alphafox
  • Reply 3 of 66
    Are PSA's really needed for stuff that is in beta and not available to the PUBLIC?

    How about modifying the headline to clarify that you're rallying against iOS 11 BETA.  Because in a year, when the final iOS 11 is released, this article will still be indexed, and still be proclaiming that iOS 11 is a fail.  Which by then it won't be.  Shirley.  ;-)
    randominternetpersonpscooter63
  • Reply 4 of 66
    nhughesnhughes Posts: 750editor
    Are PSA's really needed for stuff that is in beta and not available to the PUBLIC?

    How about modifying the headline to clarify that you're rallying against iOS 11 BETA.  Because in a year, when the final iOS 11 is released, this article will still be indexed, and still be proclaiming that iOS 11 is a fail.  Which by then it won't be.  Shirley.  ;-)
    Good point, I added the word beta to the headline. Thanks.
    king editor the gratenetmage
  • Reply 5 of 66
    AppleZuluAppleZulu Posts: 437member
    razormaid said:
    This is BS. I have it running on my 2016 Touch Bar laptop, 2011 17” laptop, 2 2011 iMacs, 3 iPads (mini, large pro and smaller pro), 2 iPhone 7+, TV4 and 2 Watches series 2.

    We have not encountered anything yet. In fact I was just talking to my business partner saying “they must have had this done & sitting around waiting for awhile because I don’t recall a “beta 1” feeling and running so “done” feeling across so many platforms. 

    TV is the star here by the way. Really nice changes to the interface. Much better. Much easier. 

    The only thing i can I can think of as to why someone MIGHT run into problems - if any - would be if they did a “rape & scrape” (that’s what we call reformatting a device or computer) and installing from scratch. I don’t know why someone would do that but since we DONT do that, all I can say is running it like an update resulting in a smooth running cross platform update. 
    It's not BS. The whole point of beta testing is that they know the software isn't ready for primetime. There will be bugs and crashes. Beta testers are the guinea pigs willing to wander into the landmines just to find them. Your bizarre suggestion that there's no reason to expect that anyone would run into problems is way off base. 
    pscooter63lolliverdysamoriajbdragonnetmageaegean
  • Reply 6 of 66
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,425administrator
    razormaid said:
    This is BS. I have it running on my 2016 Touch Bar laptop, 2011 17” laptop, 2 2011 iMacs, 3 iPads (mini, large pro and smaller pro), 2 iPhone 7+, TV4 and 2 Watches series 2.

    We have not encountered anything yet. In fact I was just talking to my business partner saying “they must have had this done & sitting around waiting for awhile because I don’t recall a “beta 1” feeling and running so “done” feeling across so many platforms. 

    TV is the star here by the way. Really nice changes to the interface. Much better. Much easier. 

    The only thing i can I can think of as to why someone MIGHT run into problems - if any - would be if they did a “rape & scrape” (that’s what we call reformatting a device or computer) and installing from scratch. I don’t know why someone would do that but since we DONT do that, all I can say is running it like an update resulting in a smooth running cross platform update. 
    I'm glad you're having an easy time. However... We've got multiple staffers with multiple devices on the beta, with none but the 2015 (now) Nuked and Paved, and everybody is running into crashes. The 2015? The OS mangled the EFI partition, utterly and completely.

    I've got it on two macs, an iPad Pro, and two iPhones. The Apple TV is later today. All told, I think we've got it on 15+ devices across the entire staff. We might just be beating on it a bit harder to tell you guys about it.

    Reiterating the point: if you use your machines to make money, or they are your only machine, install anybody's beta software at your own peril.
    edited June 2017 AppleZululolliverDeelronnetmage
  • Reply 7 of 66
    larryjwlarryjw Posts: 363member
    Don't install beta software. 

    And don't stick beans up your nose, 

    This is news? 
    StrangeDaysAppleZulu
  • Reply 8 of 66
    Just wanted to let you know that the step where you say to hold shift or option and press restore is wrong, you have to press update, if you press restore it will wipe your device. Might need to clarify.
    edited June 2017
  • Reply 9 of 66
    nhughesnhughes Posts: 750editor
    larryjw said:
    Don't install beta software. 

    And don't stick beans up your nose, 

    This is news? 
    No, it's an editorial.
    levirandominternetpersonAppleZuludysamoriaalexmacDeelronnetmagefrost_0ne
  • Reply 10 of 66
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,824member
    larryjw said:
    Don't install beta software. 

    And don't stick beans up your nose, 

    This is news? 
    Yes, because every single year someone does this and then complains because Apple broke their device. It happens every single year.
    randominternetpersonjSnivelypscooter63lolliverDeelronnetmage
  • Reply 11 of 66
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,997member
    Possibly the best headline ever written here. It's funny and true!
    nhughes
  • Reply 12 of 66
    I couldn't resist. Worked fine until I rebooted the iPad, then it got stuck on the Apple logo forever. Had to do a full restore. I probably still haven't learned my lesson though.
  • Reply 13 of 66
    razormaidrazormaid Posts: 299member
    razormaid said:
    This is BS. I have it running on my 2016 Touch Bar laptop, 2011 17” laptop, 2 2011 iMacs, 3 iPads (mini, large pro and smaller pro), 2 iPhone 7+, TV4 and 2 Watches series 2.

    We have not encountered anything yet. In fact I was just talking to my business partner saying “they must have had this done & sitting around waiting for awhile because I don’t recall a “beta 1” feeling and running so “done” feeling across so many platforms. 

    TV is the star here by the way. Really nice changes to the interface. Much better. Much easier. 

    The only thing i can I can think of as to why someone MIGHT run into problems - if any - would be if they did a “rape & scrape” (that’s what we call reformatting a device or computer) and installing from scratch. I don’t know why someone would do that but since we DONT do that, all I can say is running it like an update resulting in a smooth running cross platform update. 
    I'm glad you're having an easy time. However... We've got multiple staffers with multiple devices on the beta, with none but the 2015 (now) Nuked and Paved, and everybody is running into crashes. The 2015? The OS mangled the EFI partition, utterly and completely.

    I've got it on two macs, an iPad Pro, and two iPhones. The Apple TV is later today. All told, I think we've got it on 15+ devices across the entire staff. We might just be beating on it a bit harder to tell you guys about it.

    Reiterating the point: if you use your machines to make money, or they are your only machine, install anybody's beta software at your own peril.
    Let me clarify:  mycomment of “this is BS” was in reference to the “scare people to death” tone of the article. God, after reading your statement I would be terrified!  Fortunately I didn’t read that first, neither did the rest of my team of 28 testers. 

    I have not even had one crash, hang or anything that I would normally get and as a record company we are using some pretty memory intensive, GPU taxing software to record, remix and master. Not to mention all the contract degotiations overseas to get permission and we”re using FaceTime which is also normally buggy. I haven’t had a drop call yet. Granted we’re just going along with business as usual on our devices and computers. We’re not trying to find things that don’t work, maybe you are, but so far we’ve seriously not encountered anything at all. 

    I just think you disgarded all the people like us who had not encountered anything, leaving a one sided view of “the sky is falling” that I’m sure ABC, CBS, CNN and GOOGLE news will no doubt be featuring your article - not my comments. 

    We had actual issues with IOS 9 and IOS 10 out of the box. I mention that to prove stuff CAN happen. I’m just not finding them on IOS 11, macOS 13, TV 11 or Watch 4. (Although I thought the watch had a bug not reporting my work out correctly this morning turns out I was lazy and it caught me!  LOL)

    “This is is a beta” as people are pointing out on here and more than that, this is the FIRST beta of a new cycle so yes people should be careful I’m not saying that. I just think it’s important people don’t think this is “doom in a box” waiting to blow up their world. Write a balanced viewpoint. 

    I think youre having MORE issues trying to “go back”. If you take out the part if the article on how to go back to a previous version and the frustration THAT entailed for you in that process,  I think it would be less of an article. More than half has to do with that. 

    At leadt admend it to say “where as many have encountered NO problems whatsoever - that is not the case here with us...” then people can pause and decide which side of THAT coin would they like. That would be more balanced approach that “the sky is falling”. 
    edited June 2017
  • Reply 14 of 66
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,425administrator
    larryjw said:
    Don't install beta software. 

    And don't stick beans up your nose, 

    This is news? 
    I'd like us to not have to explain it to some, sure.
  • Reply 15 of 66
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    The anti Apple bulls*it needs to end. I thought the headline was a quote from one of the paid anti Apple sites only to find it was from AI.

    Because of this bs you have iKnockoff users literally praising android's lack of updates as an advantage and the notion "Apple releases updates that break your device durr hurr" is actually circulating with these morons. 
  • Reply 16 of 66
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,425administrator

    razormaid said:
    razormaid said:
    This is BS. I have it running on my 2016 Touch Bar laptop, 2011 17” laptop, 2 2011 iMacs, 3 iPads (mini, large pro and smaller pro), 2 iPhone 7+, TV4 and 2 Watches series 2.

    We have not encountered anything yet. In fact I was just talking to my business partner saying “they must have had this done & sitting around waiting for awhile because I don’t recall a “beta 1” feeling and running so “done” feeling across so many platforms. 

    TV is the star here by the way. Really nice changes to the interface. Much better. Much easier. 

    The only thing i can I can think of as to why someone MIGHT run into problems - if any - would be if they did a “rape & scrape” (that’s what we call reformatting a device or computer) and installing from scratch. I don’t know why someone would do that but since we DONT do that, all I can say is running it like an update resulting in a smooth running cross platform update. 
    I'm glad you're having an easy time. However... We've got multiple staffers with multiple devices on the beta, with none but the 2015 (now) Nuked and Paved, and everybody is running into crashes. The 2015? The OS mangled the EFI partition, utterly and completely.

    I've got it on two macs, an iPad Pro, and two iPhones. The Apple TV is later today. All told, I think we've got it on 15+ devices across the entire staff. We might just be beating on it a bit harder to tell you guys about it.

    Reiterating the point: if you use your machines to make money, or they are your only machine, install anybody's beta software at your own peril.
    My comment of “this is BS was in reference to the “scare people to death” tone of the article. God after reading yours I would be terrified!  Fortunately I didn’t read that first neither did the rest of my teM of 28 testers. 

    I have not even even had one crash, hang or anything that I would normally get and as a record company we are using some pretty memory intensive GPU taxing software to record, remix and master. Not to mention all the contract degotiations were using FaceTime for which is also normally buggy. I haven’t had a drop call yet. Granted we’re just going along with business as usual. We’re not trying to find things that don’t work but so far we’ve seriously not encountered anything at all. 

    I just think you disgarded all the people like us who had not encountered anything, leaving a one sided view of “the sky is falling” that I’m sure ABC, CBS, CNN and GOOGLE news will no doubt be featuring your article not my comments. 

    We had actual issues with IOS 9 and IOS 10 out if the box. So I do know what things CAN happen I’m just not finding them on IOS 11. 

    “This is is a beta” as people are pointing out and more than that this is the FIRST beta of a new cycle so yes people should be careful I’m not saying that. I just think it’s important people don’t think this is “doom in a box” waiting to blow up your world. 

    I think youre having MORE issues trying to “go back”. If you take out the part if the article on how to go back to a previous version and the frustration THAT entailed I think it would be less of an article. More than half has to do with that. 

    At leadt admend it to say “where as many have encountered no problems whatsoever that is not the case with us...” then people can pause and decide which side of THAT coin would they like. That would be more balanced approach that “the sky is falling”. 
    And, you're disregarding the reports here, there, and just about everywhere apple-specific about tales of woe and lost data.

    Apple is extraordinarily clear with its warnings about it, but yet, people download it and run with it anyway.

    Again, I'm glad you're not having any problems! Your situation appears to be the exception. I didn't write the article, but I'm not expecting any amendments.
    netmage
  • Reply 17 of 66
    nhughesnhughes Posts: 750editor
    cali said:
    The anti Apple bulls*it needs to end. I thought the headline was a quote from one of the paid anti Apple sites only to find it was from AI.

    Because of this bs you have iKnockoff users literally praising android's lack of updates as an advantage and the notion "Apple releases updates that break your device durr hurr" is actually circulating with these morons. 
    Really? Because of this editorial specifically warning people not to install PRE-RELEASE software, someone is using it to praise Android? Show me. I'd love to read how they connected those dots.
    edited June 2017 jSnivelynetmage
  • Reply 18 of 66
    irelandireland Posts: 17,570member
    Have it on my main SE for two days without any crash yet.
  • Reply 19 of 66
    xgmanxgman Posts: 151member
    Looks like a bunch of folks are having a nightmare with the first beta for High Sierra too. I've noticed that Apple is recently handing public beta testers software that really could be described as "alpha" rather than beta and far less stable than the betas of past years. Bugs are expected but it does seem to be getting worse. And one might ask why not just try to improve what has taken them so long to get stable versions of what is already out there? It sometimes seems they just go back to the drawing board .. well, just because they can..
  • Reply 20 of 66
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,425administrator
    cali said:
    The anti Apple bulls*it needs to end. I thought the headline was a quote from one of the paid anti Apple sites only to find it was from AI.

    Because of this bs you have iKnockoff users literally praising android's lack of updates as an advantage and the notion "Apple releases updates that break your device durr hurr" is actually circulating with these morons. 
    Where does it say that we have to praise Apple for everything they do? Give me a break. We don't exist to validate your purchase. If Apple does good, we tell you. If they blow it, we tell you that too.

    This is beta software. Users who have no business installing it, or who have one machine that they make a living on install it anyway. We have a responsibility to point that out.
    netmage
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