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This article was published on July 7, 2016

    You can download the macOS Sierra Public Beta today (but beware!)

    You can download the macOS Sierra Public Beta today (but beware!)
    Nate Swanner
    Story by

    Nate Swanner

    Former Reporter, TNW

    TNW's former West Coast writer in the PNW (Portland, Oregon). Nate loves amplifying developers, and codes in Swift when he's not writing. If TNW's former West Coast writer in the PNW (Portland, Oregon). Nate loves amplifying developers, and codes in Swift when he's not writing. If you need to get in touch, Twitter is your best bet.

    If you’re ready to be on the bleeding edge of desktop software, the macOS Sierra Public Beta is rolling out today.

    The beta should not be considered stable, though it has seen some stability improvements when compared to early developer builds. You also won’t get to test all features just yet; a notable exemption is Auto Unlock, which is enabled in the Sierra Public Beta, but only available to developers using the watchOS 3 beta.

    Other services or features may not work as expected or be included at all — like Apple Pay in Safari. Apple also recommends you back your current Mac up before downloading the Sierra Public Beta, or putting it onto a secondary Mac.

    Things to check out!

    In our preview of Sierra, we noted a few killer features you should check out. If you haven’t yet, we suggest giving it a read for a more in-depth take.

    Siri is probably the feature you’re going to toy with most, and Apple tells TNW her keyboard launch command is now command-space-hold. So get to mashing keys and talking to your computer.

    I’d also recommend you check out iCloud auto sync. In testing, some command-line script threw it off, but it’s meant to sync your desktops completely. I can report that additional testing reflects that, and it’s awesome.

    If you don’t have two Macs running Sierra, you can still check out your files in iCloud Drive on iOS.

    Photos is pretty great in macOS Sierra, too.

    macOSSierraApplePayTNW

    Not finished

    You won’t get to have all the fun yet. Messenger won’t show you the fun iOS 10 stickers and such unless you’ve also got a beta build build of iOS 10 (and even then it’s hit-and-miss).

    Apple Pay is also still in the works, so you’ll have to wait until the Fall for that.

    And remember — it’s beta. Expect your fan to kick in often, your battery life to annoy you and random errors and crashes. Your OS may be Sierra, but your apps aren’t written for it — so be patient.

    But have fun!