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Apple has announced the release date for its upcoming iOS 12 update: September 17th, but you don’t have to wait until then; you can download the finished version of iOS 12 now!.

Starting today users can gain access to improved notifications, Memoji, Screen Time, Siri Shortcuts, and other new features that are included in the update. Remember that iOS 12 is supposed to improve performance and responsiveness on iPhones both old and new.

The golden master build of iOS 12 – very likely the same version that will be widely released next week – is rolling out today to participants in Apple’s beta testing program. So if you want to start using the new update today, all you need to do is join the beta.

But before anything else, make sure you back up your device while iOS 11 is still on it – just in case. The best way to do this is through iTunes, even though nobody likes opening iTunes, but going the iCloud route might overwrite your previous iOS 11 backup with a newer iOS 12 one. And, if something goes wrong, that’ll put you in a tough spot. So just do the iTunes method. It doesn’t take long.

How to install the iOS 12 GM release:

Visit beta.apple.com/sp/betaprogram. (It's best to do this directly from the iPhone or iPad you’ll be updating to iOS 12.)

Choose "sign up," and log in with your Apple ID. Agree to the usual terms and conditions.

From here, select the iOS tab, where you will see the option to download the beta profile onto your device. Do that.

Choose "install." You'll be asked to enter your iOS device passcode and tap through a few screens.

Eventually, your iPhone will restart. After that happens, you can go to settings, check for an update, and you should see the iOS 12 update come up. Download and install it as you would any other iOS release.

The GM update should look like this:

What iOS devices are supported?

iPhone X
iPhone 8 and 8 Plus
iPhone 7 and 7 Plus
iPhone 6S and 6S Plus
iPhone SE
iPhone 6 and 6 Plus
iPhone 5S
iPad Pro (9.7-inch, 10.5-inch, and both generations of 12.9-inch)
iPad (2018)
iPad (fifth-gen)
iPad Air and iPad Air 2
iPad mini 2, 3, and 4
iPod Touch (sixth-gen)

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