How to Install iPadOS 18 Beta on iPad

Jun 18, 2024 - Leave a Comment

How to install iPadOS 18 beta right now

iPadOS 18 was announced with some compelling new features, including new customization options for the Home Screen like being able to place icons and widgets anywhere, Dark Mode icon color hue customizations, Messages scheduling, a revamped Photos app with new capabilities like being able to remove subjects from pictures, a bunch of AI features to help writing, improved Siri with connections to ChatGPT, and much more.

If you’re interested in exploring iPadOS 18 beta on your iPad, you’ll want to take into consideration the nature of beta system software, check iPad model compatibility against the supported devices list, and you might find it helpful to walkthrough the process of installing the iPadOS 18 developer beta onto iPad.

Anyone can install iPadOS 18 beta on iPad, but that doesn’t mean you should

Technically speaking, anyone can register their Apple ID to be enrolled in the Developer Beta Testing Program with Apple, and it’s free to do so. This means that anyone who enrolls their Apple ID to be a developer can access beta system software right away, including iPadOS 18 beta.

But just because you can do something, does not mean that you should.

It’s very important to remember that developer beta versions of iPadOS, such as the current iPadOS 18 beta, are going to be buggy and unstable. Installing it on your iPad could lead to unexpected behavior, or problematic issues, including system crashes, app incompatibilities, overheating, bugs, battery drain, and even potentially data loss. This is standard with any beta version, but particularly with developer beta releases that are early in the beta cycle.

More casual users that are less comfortable with early beta releases should wait until the iPadOS 18 public beta program debuts, which Apple has said starts in July. That beta will still be buggy and less stable than a final version, but it’ll be further along than the early developer beta builds.

Most iPad users should simply avoid betas, and wai until iPadOS 18 is available in the fall.

iPadOS 18 Supported iPad List

Here is the list of iPadOS 18 compatible iPad models, directly from Apple:

  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (3rd generation and later, including M4)
  • iPad Pro 11-inch (1st generation and later, including M4)
  • iPad Air (3rd generation and later, including M2 models in both 11″ and 13″ display sizes)
  • iPad (7th generation and later)
  • iPad mini (5th generation and later)

Basically any modern design iPad Pro with Face ID and without a Home button is eligible, as are newer models of iPad Air, iPad, and iPad Mini.

You will also need at least 15GB of storage free on iPad to be able to successfully install iPadOS 18 beta.

How to Install iPadOS 18 Developer Beta on iPad

If you’re comfortable running beta system software, here’s how to get it installed onto your iPad right now:

  1. Before proceeding, make sure you backup iPad to iCloud, and to your computer with Finder or iTunes. Failure to backup your iPad could result in permanent data loss.
  2. Enroll your Apple ID account in the Apple Developer program if you have not done so already, you can do this by going to and choosing to “Start Your Enrollment” and then signing in with your Apple ID and following the steps
  3. Next, open the “Settings” app on iPad
  4. Select “General”, and then go to “Software Update”
  5. Tap on “Beta Updates” (this won’t be available if your Apple ID isn’t enrolled in the beta program)
  6. Tap on “iPadOS 18 Developer Beta”
  7. Tap to select iPadOS 18 Developer Beta

  8. Go back to the main Software Update screen and it will refresh to show iPadOS 18 Beta available as a software update
  9. iPadOS 18 beta ready to be installed

  10. Select “Update Now” to download and install iPadOS 18 beta on iPad

iPadOS 18 beta will be installed onto the iPad, and the iPad will reboot to complete the software update. You’ll soon be presented with the iPadOS 18 home screen, ready to explore and use the beta as you please.

iPadOS 18 home screen with customizations

Future beta updates will arrive through the same Software Update mechanism.

If you’re interested in installing the iPadOS 18 beta, you might also be curious to install iOS 18 beta on iPhone and installing macOS Sequoia beta on Mac. There are also beta versions for watchOS 11 and tvOS 18.

The final version of iPadOS 18 will be released this fall.


Related articles:

Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iPad, Tips & Tricks

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