The beta level totally different from the alpha level of the API, code is tested (it still may have some bugs, as it is still not the stable release). Also, in contrast to the alpha level, features in beta will not be dropped in the future releases. If there is a breaking, not backward compatible change in the API, Kubernetes team will provide a guide on how to migrate. Using beta on a production environment is not the best idea, but you can safely use beta on a non-business critical cluster. You are also encouraged to provide feedback from using beta, this will make Kubernetes better for everyone of us using it. A version name in the beta level will contain the word beta, such as v1beta1 for example.