In his weekly wrap (found here) up, Mark Jacobs stated that Beta 1 will start on Tuesday, July 31, 2018. His one caveat to that date is the ability of the API server to handle large scale simultaneous traffic (as in 500 people all trying to login at once). MJ is literally begging for any and all IT, Alpha, and Beta 1 testers to log into the game this weekend to stress the servers.
So, if you are a tester with access to the game, please login and play this weekend!
Regarding Beta 1
MJ stated that PvP scenarios, crafting, gathering, and building will all be in Beta 1. The combat ability builder will also be in place. He continues to stress that this is a ‘true beta’ and all testers should understand that and expect things to constantly evolve and possibly fail as development and testing continue.
A few more items
Daily testing will stop for Beta 1 testers
Beta 1 testing should be every weekend
The current client is still 32 bit, so graphic textures will drastically improve once the 64 bit client is ready
Expect wipes (definitely at the end of testing prior to launch)
NDA should begin lifting in stages during Beta 1 (including allowing streaming of gameplay)