Apple Releases Sixth Beta of macOS Big Sur to Developers [Updated]

Apple today seeded the sixth beta of the upcoming macOS Big Sur update to developers for testing purposes, two weeks after releasing the fifth beta and more than two months after the new update was unveiled at the Worldwide Developers Conference.


The macOS Big Sur beta can be downloaded through the Apple Developer Center and once the appropriate profile is installed, subsequent betas will be available through the Software Update mechanism in System Preferences.

macOS Big Sur introduces a refreshed design to the Mac operating system, overhauling the entire look from the curvature of the window corners to the dock icons to the system sounds. Everything feels fresh but familiar, with a lighter and more modern appearance. There's a new customizable Control Center that mirrors the Control Center on iOS devices, putting key system controls right at your fingertips.

The Notification Center has been redesigned with iOS-style widgets that are available in multiple sizes, plus there are more interactive notifications that are now grouped by app to make it easier to see what's going on. Safari is faster and more battery efficient, plus there's a new start page that can be customized with wallpapers and sections that include Reading List and iCloud Tabs, which makes Safari more tailored to your individual usage needs.

Tabs have been redesigned, there's a built-in language translation feature, Chrome and Firefox Extensions can be ported to Safari, and YouTube supports 4K video playback. There's also an option to choose which sites an extension works with for greater privacy. Speaking of privacy, a new Privacy Report feature lets users know the trackers Safari is blocking when you visit websites.

Messages is more similar to the Messages app on iOS with support for pinned conversations, mentions, inline replies, and Memoji creation, plus the built-in search feature has been overhauled to make it easier to find links, photos, and conversations in the app.

Apple redesigned the Maps app to add support for Look Around, indoor maps, and Guides, which are lists of notable attractions, restaurants, and more created by trusted sources. Maps can also be used to generate directions for cycling routes and electric vehicle trips that can be sent to iPhone, and shared ETA updates are now viewable on the Mac.

Photos includes a better Retouch tool, Apple Music's For You section has been replaced with a Listen Now section, HomeKit Secure Video cameras support Face Recognition and Activity zones, and Siri can answer a wider range of questions than before.

In the future, the macOS Big Sur App Store will help users better understand privacy practices with clear info on the information that an app collects, and after installing macOS Big Sur, you'll see faster updates that begin in the background and then finish more quickly to make it easier to keep your Mac up to date.

Apple in the third beta of macOS Big Sur changed the battery icon for the Battery section in System Preferences, refining the design to make it look more clean and streamlined. There update also brought a new design for the Music app icon (it's red), and some color changes to the buttons and icons inside the music app.


For more on everything that's new in macOS Big Sur, make sure to check out our roundup.

Update: Today's macOS Big Sur beta adds support for the new 2020 iMac models.

Related Roundup: macOS 11 Big Sur

Top Rated Comments

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3 weeks ago
ugh, they still haven't gotten rid of that stupid hover effect where the background and shadow of a title bar will only appear after mousing over it for a second or two (or scrolling) in apps like Finder, Disk Utility and TextEdit (in plain text mode). The UI has become super busy when moving your cursor over elements in a way that is very reminiscent of Windows. Scott Forstall would have had a word to say about that.





Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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3 weeks ago
Finally available on my 2020 iMac! Installing soon - will report back.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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3 weeks ago
Hey All!

Just wanted to update you on progress of iMac 2020 install. After a lot of trying I was able to get it installed.

My troubleshooting(not something you have to do but can try:

* I went into Disk Utility and ran first aid on everything I could. Did this in recover mode and from normal app.
* In recover mode and checked that secure boot was turned on
* In finder I searched "macOS" under this Mac. Found and deleted the installer(new installer, but later found Apple pushed a slightly newer version a few hours ago)
* Unenrolled myself from the developer program and re-enrolled after
* Double checked that macOS installer was deleted again
* Ran first aid on disks again to be safe
* Under "Energy Saver" turned Prevent computer from sleeping on and set "Turn display off after" to Never so the display and computer wouldn't go to sleep after starting the process from scratch again.

No you don't have to do all of this but I tried all of this and it ended up working. One thing I noticed was earlier on it would download about 20 to 30% of the download consistently and then it stopped every 10 seconds and then download it again and then stopped again. After I did everything above it consistently downloaded the entire update with no issues and I went through the Installer process. The when the installer was up and running I checked the version of it and it had changed from earlier versioner which made me feel more confident on proceeding for the 4th time.

Hope some of this helps. If you need more assistance let me know. Best of luck!
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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3 weeks ago
Finally!! Beta 5 was getting buggier and buggier by the day.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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3 weeks ago
Build number 20A5364e.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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3 weeks ago


Want to install this on my 2020 iMac, except when I install the profile I get...


"The requested version of macOS is not available." which is fun. That is with the beta utility installed and active.

I think beta 6 is so far only available via delta update. The full installer isn’t available yet. Don’t know if it will be, but I expect that it will be. Maybe just wait a bit longer and see. It is considerably bigger than the delta update, so maybe it is taking apple longer to get it on their servers.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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