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How to get the iPadOS 14 beta on your iPad

Get the beta of the new version of iOS for iPads

iPad 2018
(Image: © Future)

At WWDC 2020, Apple finally announced iPadOS 14, the newest operating system update slated to come to its iPad tablets – and though it's not officially coming out until later this year, Apple has now released a beta of the OS that you can download.

While we'd only expect 'full fat' iPadOS 14 to come to all compatible tablets towards the end of the year, this beta lets you test out the software early to get a taste of what iPadOS 14 will be like to use.

If you want to read up on what the new iPadOS 14 features are set to be, or to see if your iPad is compatible, check out our main iPadOS 14 page for everything you need to know.

But if you're keen to download the iPadOS 14 beta now, you're on the right page, because we'll run you through everything you need to do to get it. Bear in mind this process isn't as easy as it will be to download the full release, as a notification prompt will do all the work for you there – for the beta you'll have to put in some work.

How to download the iPadOS 14 beta

Before you start, make sure your iPad has a good internet connection and is charged up. Downloading iPadOS 14 took 15% of the battery of our iPad Pro 12.9 (2018) and it could take more for other devices.

1. Sign up for the Apple Beta Software Program

(Image credit: Apple / TechRadar)

iPadOS 14, like iOS 14, is available to people who join the Apple Beta Software Program (ABSP). To join, simply head to the Apple Beta Software Program website, and click 'Sign Up' to go through the stages of becoming a member of the program. If you've already been part of an Apple beta, simply click 'Sign In'.

Now your Apple ID account will be linked to your ABSP account. Next, click Enroll your Device, select whichever operating system you want to join the beta program for, and go through the stages to make sure your device is signed up and ready for the iOS 14, iPadOS 14, macOS 11, or tvOS 14 beta.

Don't close this window just yet, you'll need it later.

2. Before getting iPadOS 14, back up your iPad

We'd recommend backing up all the data on your iPad before you download the iPadOS 14 beta. It's a good idea to do this before any software update, but a beta hasn't been as rigorously tested as fully-developed software, so there's enough risk of crashing or data wipes to mean you should always be careful.

Use iCloud, Google Drive, OneDrive, or another similar service to back up your treasured files.

3. Download the beta profile

(Image credit: Apple / TechRadar)

Head back to the 'Enrol Your Device' window for the Apple Beta Software, and scroll down to the second step - 'Install profile'.

You'll have to do this on your iPad itself so the profile can be downloaded straight to it. Next, you'll need to manually install the profile.

4. Install the profile

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Once this profile is downloaded, you'll need to manually install it, to do this, head to Settings > General > Profile, then select the 'Profile Downloaded' tab (a new option which should appear below your profile icon and above Airplane Mode), then tap the downloaded beta profile.

You'll be prompted to install the profile, so click 'Install' in the top right of the window that appears, enter your passcode, click 'Install' in the next window that appears, then 'Install' again in the smaller window that pops up. Finally, click 'Done' in this last window.

5. Install the iPadOS 14 beta update

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After a short while, the iPadOS 14 profile should be downloaded. Still in the Settings menu, now scroll down to 'General', then 'Software Update', then 'Download and Install', then enter your passcode.

Now your device will be downloading and installing the iPadOS 14 beta itself. It took us roughly 20 minutes to download it, but that time might vary depending on your device. You'll be able to use your iPad in the meantime, but once it's installed you'll have to restart your iPad for iPadOS 14 to properly work.

Congratulations, you're now one of the first people in the world to get to use iPadOS 14.