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Apple released iOS 17.5 beta 1 to developers today after a month-long hiatus with zero beta releases. While iOS 17.5 beta 1 is a relatively minor update, there are a few things worth noting. Scroll down for more information.

iOS 17.5 beta details

iOS 17.5 beta 1 features build number 21F5048f. It’s now available to registered developers, who can update through the Settings app by going to General and then selecting Software update. We expect iOS 17.4 to be released to public beta testers later this week or next week.

What’s new in iOS 17.5 beta 1?

Web installation

In the European Union, iOS 17.5 provides support for installing apps directly from the developer’s website. Apple announced this new “Web Distribution” feature last month, explaining that it allows developers to distribute iOS apps directly from their website.

To use this feature, developers will have to sign up to the new App Store business terms, which means they will pay a basic technology fee of €0.50 for the first annual install over one million in the last 12 months.

Any software distributed over the Internet will still be required to meet Apple’s notarization rules. Apps can only be installed from a website domain where the developer is registered with App Store Connect. Apple will also provide a number of APIs for developers to integrate with system functionality.

Although iOS 17.5 beta 1 introduced this feature, there are currently no developers offering their apps through this new Web Distribution feature. We don’t expect this to change until iOS 17.5 is released to the general public in May.

Design changes

iOS 17.5 beta 1 also includes a few minor design changes to the operating system.

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  • In the Apple Books app, Apple has redesigned the “Reading Purpose” icon in the top navigation bar.
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  • In the Settings app, under “Privacy & Security,” there’s a new glyph for the “Hotkeys for Web Browsers” menu.
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  • The Podcasts widget has been updated to have a new dynamic color that changes based on the description of the podcast you’re currently playing.

New unwanted tracking system

according to the code found by 9-5Mac, iOS 17.5 appears to include a new system based on anti-tracking features for accessories like AirTags. This comes after Apple last year announced a partnership with Google to work on a new “industry specification to address unwanted tracking”.

Strings added to Find My will identify iOS tracking accessories, even if they’re not Apple or Find My certified, and help users turn them off.

“This item is not certified on the Apple Find My network. You can disable this item and stop it from sharing its location with its owner. To do this, follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer of this product on the website”, reads one of the new lines.


according to Aaron Perris on TwitteriOS 17.5 also includes an update for MDM users: “MDM solutions can now apply beta during automated device enrollment.”

Did you notice anything else new in iOS 17.5? Let us know in the comments.

What’s next for iOS 17.5?

It remains to be seen if Apple has more changes for iOS 17.5 than what was unveiled today. The focus is on the European Union, where Apple continues to comply with the Digital Markets Act imposed by the European Commission.

iOS 17.5 will likely be released to the wider public in mid to late May. This will be the last iOS 17 update released before Apple unveils iOS 18 at WWDC in June.

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