Apple made some very exciting announcements regarding Macs at their all-online WWDC 2020 event. While the planned transition of Macs to Apple Silicon may have stolen the spotlight, the upcoming macOS Big Sur release might be their biggest software update in years. Dubbed as macOS version 11, macOS Big Sur brings a visual overhaul to the Mac in addition to key new features and improvements. You might already be aware of this if you were keeping up on recent tech news, but you might be wondering when exactly you can install the upcoming version of macOS on your computer.
But when can you get MacOS Big Sur? When is the final version set to be released? And what about the beta versions? That’s what we’ll discuss here.
Without further ado, let’s check out the release dates for the final version, developer and public beta builds of macOS Big Sur.
What is the macOS Big Sur Release Date for Final Versions?
Update: MacOS Big Sur will debut on November 12.
The official Big Sur release date was announced at the Apple Silicon Mac debut event.
We know that you’re excited to try out the new update as soon as possible, but unfortunately, it’s going to be a while before you can get your hands on the final stable version of macOS Big Sur. Right now, if you check Apple’s macOS Big Sur preview webpage, it’s only stated that the update is coming this fall. Therefore, we don’t have an exact release date just yet.
However, if we look at Apple’s track record in recent years when it comes to software releases, they usually release the final version of macOS shortly after the release of new iPhones in September. Hence, a late September release seems realistic, although it’s worth noting that macOS Catalina came out on October 7th last year, a couple weeks after iPhone 11 hit the shelves. Without diving too much into the rumor mill, there are also some indicators that iPhones could be due in November this year, so it’s always possible that macOS Big Sur would be released later then too. Ultimately, time will tell.
We’ll keep you updated on this as we receive more official information, but as of right now, a fall release is all we’ve heard from Apple. So, you won’t be able to update your Mac to the latest software anytime soon unless you’re willing to try out the beta versions of macOS Big Sur.
macOS Big Sur Developer Beta is Available Now
Apple started rolling out the macOS Big Sur Developer Beta 1 update on the same day as the WWDC announcement, but as the name suggests, it’s not available for everyone. Only developers who’re part of the Apple Developer Program are eligible to try out this experimental build.
That being said, you can download the macOS Big Sur developer beta on your Mac right now if you’re a registered developer yourself. Or, if you’re just a regular user who wants access to the developer beta somehow, you can enroll in the Apple Developer Program by paying an annual fee of $99 which not only gives you access to developer beta builds but also allows you to publish your own apps in the App Store.
We get that most of you wouldn’t want to spend money just to try out an update. Fortunately, you can install the developer profile from third-party sources which gives you access to beta software updates from Apple. Or, you can just wait a couple more weeks for the release of macOS Big Sur public beta.
macOS Big Sur Public Beta Release Date
Normally, Apple begins seeding the public beta builds of macOS just a few weeks after they release the developer preview. However, if you check Apple’s website, there’s no specific date mentioned, and “Coming Soon” is all we get for now (though Apple did mention that “July” would be the timeline for the public beta during WWDC 2020).
Since the macOS Big Sur developer beta came out in the fourth week of June this year, we can realistically expect the public beta to be available in the coming weeks. We’ll make sure to keep you posted if there are any changes or delays.
Similar to the developer beta build, not all Macs will receive the public beta software when it comes out. To be eligible for the macOS Big Sur public beta, you’ll need to be part of the Apple Beta Software Program. Therefore, make sure to enroll your Mac in the Beta Program if you lack the patience to wait till September for the stable release,
Thankfully, you don’t have to spend any money on enrollment, unlike the Developer Program. Plus, enrolling your Mac in the Apple Beta Software Program also gives you access to public beta versions of iOS, iPadOS, watchOS and tvOS, so if you own other Apple devices like the iPhone and iPad, this is a one-step procedure to access multiple beta builds that Apple has to offer.
It goes without saying that beta versions are early experimental builds and could suffer from severe bugs and stability issues that could prevent the software and install apps from functioning properly. This is why we highly recommend you to not install these beta updates on your primary device.
If prior years are any indicator of Apple’s software release schedule, you can expect the public beta builds and final versions of other Apple software to be available around the same time as macOS.
Now that you have an idea regarding macOS Big Sur release schedule for final and beta versions, are you excited to try out the public beta when it comes out? Or, have you already installed the developer beta by any chance? Do share your valuable thoughts and experience in the comments section down below.