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Apple releases iOS 9.3 beta 2 with Night Shift, Touch ID Notes, & new 3D Touch shortcuts

iOS 9.3 3D Touch

Apple has released the second iOS 9.3 preview beta for testers ahead of the big feature update’s general release. The release follows the first preview release of iOS 9.3 for developers, public beta testers, and a 1.1 update for developers that included an installation fix. iOS 9.3 includes plenty of changes including a new feature called Night Shift, Touch ID and secure passwords for Notes, new 3D Touch Quick Actions and peek and pop gestures for iPhone 6s users, and much more. We’ll check out the latest beta version of the upcoming release and highlight any changes below.

Night Shift works a lot like the popular Flux utility on the Mac, which changes the display color temperature between sunset and sunrise to make screen reading easier on the eyes and encourage falling asleep easier. This feature requires 64-bit devices.

iOS 9.3’s Notes app adds the ability to secure individual notes with one secure password plus Touch ID on compatible iPhones and iPads. Secure notes are only visible on iOS 9.3 and OS X 10.11.4 or later with no compatibility on iCloud on the web yet.

iPhone 6s and 6s Plus users can access additional 3D Touch shortcuts starting with the iOS 9.3 beta as well. Useful new shortcuts include quick access to battery, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and wallpaper options in the Settings app from the Home screen.

For CarPlay users, iOS 9.3 adds the full Apple Music experience with For You and New sections as well as Nearby in Maps. iOS 9.3 also includes a major new education initiative with multi-user support and much more.

For more on iOS 9.3 beta, check out our hands-on video:

Let us know in the comments, via email at tips at 9to5mac dot com, or on Twitter @9to5Mac if you spot any changes in the new beta, and we’ll update with changes we find as well.

Here’s what’s new:

  • Updated Control Center as previewed before with Night Shift toggle:


  • Night Shift settings reorganized between beta 1 and beta 2
  • New Media Library section within Privacy section in Settings


  • Wallpaper option removed from 3D Touch on Settings
  • Apple Watch app now shows current watch face, previous beta required multiple watches to access this feature


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  1. It bothers me that Night shift, an “OS Mode”, is down between Timer and Calculator, two actual Apps, instead of up top with Do Not Disturb and the other “OS Modes”. Of course, the flashlight isn’t really an app like Timer, Calculator, and Camera, and basically, Control Center continues to be a complete UI disaster.

    • taoprophet420 - 7 years ago

      They should have Control Center take up the entire screen like Notification Center. It would leave room to organize the layout more. I wish they would do the full screen Control Center with the option to add some of your own shortcuts

    • MK (@MathiasMK84) - 7 years ago

      You are so right… Completely wrong place, and even between two apps instead of at least next to the flashlight.

    • Jeff Greco (@jeffgreco) - 7 years ago

      Would be confusing as heck to have it on the same line as a crescent moon icon though.

    • Lederh (@EderH) - 7 years ago

      i updated to 9.3 beta 2 and error 53 occured, any ideas, anyone on how i could fix this bullshit?

    • avromj - 7 years ago

      They couldn’t put it on top they have already 5 now it’s 5 on the bottom too.

  2. taoprophet420 - 7 years ago

    Glad they didn’t go with the hideous lamp shade icon for Night Shift.I still wish they would choose a different icon for Do Not Disturb, the moon to me is a symbol of night mode.The hand of privacy icon with a no circle would be a good option to me or a phone with no circle.

  3. mikkeskaug - 7 years ago

    Not entirely true! Mine showed current watch face on beta1 aswell. Even with only one watch paired

  4. o0smoothies0o - 7 years ago

    Wow. The option menu that pops up with the control center night shift mode is really really redundant and it’s going to be extremely annoying. That should absolutely not pop up an option menu, the control center is for quick actionable changes to settings, not more specific options, hence why there is no additional menu when you tap wifi or Bluetooth. That better change before it’s released, that’s just bad. I want to tap that and have it immediately switch, not tap again every single time.

    Of course Apple is too stupid to use 3D Touch which is part of the reason why it’s a pathetic feature currently. If they had smart engineers you’d see 3D Touch in control center, when:
    •You press on wifi you’d get a submenu pop up which allows you to select a wifi network
    •You press the Bluetooth icon and you can select a Bluetooth device to connect to and see what is currently connected, and it’s battery % next to it.
    •You press the Play/Pause button and you get option to Shuffle All, Play Recently Added Playlist, or Play Top Charts. •You press the fast forward or rewind buttons and it pops up a list of the next 4 or previous 4 songs respectively.
    •You press the alarm icon and get shortcuts to start stopwatch, start timer, or create alarm, like the quick actions on the app itself.
    •You press the camera and it gives the quick actions that the camera app uses.

    While I’m on the topic of useful things the useless 3D Touch could actually do, I’d like to say an obvious use for it:

    During video playback you press the screen anywhere and it pauses the video, and during paused video, you press the screen and it plays instantly. No menu pop-up, no tapping and waiting for the menu just to tap on the play/pause again. That would be an actual good use.

    • ttss6 - 7 years ago

      Like the same pop up menu that appears for AirDrop and AirPlay? It’s not much of a stretch for non-3D touch displays to do it this way. It’s still much faster than drilling into settings. I’m hoping though for what you suggested and an ability to customize CC with iOS X!

  5. Is anyone having trouble with the battery charging? After updating my iPhone 6s I was at 5% and going down despite being plugged in and charging. I’ve put it in battery saving mode just to charge a little faster, but it has charged 10% after 1 hour (?!!

    Did a hard reset, with no luck…

  6. PMZanetti - 7 years ago

    Does secure Notes work for anyone? I don’t get it. It never prompts me for Touch ID, despite enabling in settings.

    • applewatch20152015 - 7 years ago

      It doesn’t lock the entire app, just a particular note within the Notes app. Turn on password protection in Settings. Then add a new note, tap the Share icon and choose the Password Protect Note option.

      • Thomas Miller - 7 years ago

        Works fine for me in the first public beta. First time it took 2 try’s and than was good

  7. What is the use of having bluetooth & wi-fi in control center as well as in 3D touch for settings? Rather Apple should add setting shortcuts such as background data, location services for 3D touch.

  8. Tom Hank - 7 years ago

    Thanks for your useful article. Actually, Apple introduces this feature to ease the strain on your eyes when looking at the screen at night. I have been using Apple products for four years. I must say that it is a good initiative of Apple to prevent damage to the eye. But I don’t like this yellow light. It’s really irritating. So as a health conscious person, I am using “ocushield” screen protector to protect my eyes from harmful blue light.

  9. Kanduri Bharadwaj - 7 years ago

    So funny, who needs Again Wifi and Bluetooth in the 3D touch actions for settings app. its easy to swipe up the control center for that. It would have been good if Mobile data is included!!

  10. I Don’t know why the 3d Shortcuts of the settings have wifi and bluetooth, thats allready in the toogles… they should put data connection and sounds, at least we could have some more options

  11. Thomas Miller - 7 years ago

    Any idea when the public beta of 9.3.2 will be out? I was hoping for today but never happened

  12. vibber - 7 years ago

    So, has it been released to (public) testers or just developers as of yet? I wish 9to5mac would be more specific when reporting on this.

    • Sam /\\\ (@SamD362) - 7 years ago

      Apple Betas are always public (as far as I’m aware). You have to sign up to the apple Beta program ( Then download the profile onto your iPhone/iPad

      • vibber - 7 years ago

        That’s right, but the public betas are usually released a few days after the developer ones. My request was for 9to5 to be specific about which was released – and they do seem to have improved in that area.


Avatar for Zac Hall Zac Hall

Zac covers Apple news, hosts the 9to5Mac Happy Hour podcast, and created