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Apple doles out third iOS 6 beta to developers

Apple has given developers a third beta of iOS 6 ahead of its release this fall. It's the second major update since developers got the initial beta in June.

Josh Lowensohn Former Senior Writer
Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.
Josh Lowensohn
2 min read

Apple has given developers yet another update to iOS 6 ahead of its public release later this year.

This third beta comes 21 days after Apple's last update. Apple provided developers an early taste of the software at its annual developers conference in early June. Several more betas are expected ahead of a release to the general public, which Apple said will come in the fall.

Per MacRumors, the new update comes devoid of a changes list. Developers seeing the over-the-air update on their iOS device simply get the message that it contains "bug fixes and improvements."

These updates can occasionally contain new, or otherwise previously undisclosed features. Some discoveries from the previous beta included the addition of the Smart Banner feature made available for Web site owners to promote their iOS applications, as well as a way to toggle the new Shared Photo Streams feature on and off.

Apple had been expected to provide an update for the beta version of the software by the end of the month. Shortly after the second beta's release, it was discovered that the software would expire on Tuesday, July 31, 2012.

According to Apple, iOS 6 adds some 200 new features to iOS 5. Many of the main ones are simply refinements of existing features, such as FaceTime calling over 3G, more information about movies, restaurants, and sports scores in Siri, and extended photo-sharing features in Apple's Photo Streams feature. However there are a handful of new things, not the least of which is a completely new Maps application, as well as Passbook, Apple's new digital wallet service.

If any new features are unearthed in this latest version, we'll update this post.

Update at 2:10 p.m. PT: Boy Genius Report has posted a full log of changes from the release. According to a copy of that document, which only registered developers can access from Apple's Web site, the release is primarily comprised of bug fixes and changes to some existing behaviors.

Separately, 9to5mac has posted several screenshots of new and altered features. That includes a settings menu for the new Maps app that lets users swap between miles and kilometers, adjust the size of labels and change the volume of Siri's voice in the new turn-by-turn navigation feature. Apple has also tweaked the look of the bookmarks, history and reading list icons in Safari.