Special Note: The links here are for iPhone 5. If you have an iPhone 4s, here is your link to the iOS7 .dmg. The iTunes 11.1 should work regardless.
You don't need a developer account to upgrade to iOS 7. Thanks to an anonymous developer that decided to upload the Gold Master edition of iOS7 and another developer that decided to upload iTunes 11.1, you too can beat the general public to the new and "improved" iOS.
Be prepared, if you don't like Windows Phone 8, you're not going to like iOS 7. This UI is a major departure for Apple and not something most people are going to appreciate, in my view, but others may love it. Steve Ballmer may have saved his last troll for Apple because iOS 7 shares a lot of elements of WP8, in my opinion.
Here are the steps (Mac only) Window's users need to look at Lifehacker for instructions, sorry:
- Update your software to 6.14 if you have an iPhone 5, 6.13 if you have an iPhone 4s.
- Transfer your purchases from your iPhone into iTunes, along with any pictures you haven't transferred to iPhoto.
- Backup your iPhone
- Download iTunes 11.1 beta. You can get it from Kim dot Com's website here. Ironically, dot Com's site doesn't play nice with Safari, so download Chrome if you don't have it and use Google's spy-bot.
- Open the .dmg and install iTunes 11.1. Works fine, don't pay attention to the beta designation. Apple will be pushing this update out to everyone within the next couple of days.
- Once you have transferred your purchases, photos, backed up your phone and downloaded and installed iTunes 11.1, it's now time to download the Gold Master of iOS7. Gold Masters are the final release. Don't worry about there being an expiration on the Gold Master. I've been downloading them for years and there is no expiration on it. Even if there was, you'd just have to download it again come November or so.
- Download iOS7 here. This is for model A1428. Check the back of your phone for the model number.
- The iOS 7 package is about 1.23gb for the iPhone 5. Once you have downloaded, double click on the download, drag the .ipsw file to your desktop.
- Replug your iPhone into your Mac. Your iPhone should show up. Go to iTunes >Summary and then hold down on the option key and click on update.
- Finder will come up and now you need to find the .ipsw file on your desktop and open it. You are now updating to iOS7.
No developer account needed. You now can brag about having iOS7 without having to pay $99 a year for a developer's license.
Impressions (updated as I go along)
- Mail: Sent box and drafts gone. You can no longer check to see if you sent an email to someone in case you forgot? Drafts? Where did they go? Update: Found them. When you pull up mail boxes, you have to hit Edit in the top right corner and then you'll see this nested menu that allows you to check what you want to see in your mailboxes. This isn't very Apple like. See this screen capture:
- Wife's first impressions "Looks cartoonish. I'm not sure I like it."
Jon Rubenstein's contribution to iOS7:
iTunes Radio is pretty sweet. It comes with several playlists that scroll across the top and you can search for your favorite artist. Nice touch.