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Ahead of the release of the M1 Macs, Apple provided developers with a Developer Transition Kit that included a Mac mini equipped with an A12Z Bionic chip first used in the iPad Pro, 16GB RAM, a 512GB SSD, two USB-C ports, two USB-A ports, and an HDMI 2.0 port.

mac-mini-developer-transition-kit-photo.jpeg
Image via Axel Roest

These DTKs were offered up on a temporary basis to developers who paid $500 for access, and were aimed at giving developers a way to create Universal apps to prepare for the transition from Intel processors to Apple silicon chips.

Apple is now asking developers to return their Developer Transition Kits in exchange for a one-time use code that will provide a $200 discount on an M1 Mac.
Thank you for participating in the Universal App Quick Start Program and your continued commitment to building great apps for Mac. Response to the new Macs has been incredible, and we love the fantastic experiences developers like you have already created for Mac users.

Now that the new MacBook Air, Mac mini, and MacBook Pro powered by M1 are available, it'll soon be time to return the Developer Transition Kit (DTK) that was sent to you as part of the program. Please locate the original packaging for use in returning the DTK. We'll email you in a few weeks with instructions for returning the DTK.

In appreciation of your participation in the program and to help with your continued development of Universal apps, you'll receive a one-time use code for 200 USD to use toward the purchase of a Mac with M1, upon confirmed return of the DTK. Until your program membership expires one year after your membership start date, you'll have continued access to other program benefits such as Technical Support incidents and private discussion forums.
Apple first sent out Developer Transition Kits at the end of June, so developers have had them on hand for the last seven months. Developers were meant to have a year with the DTK for app development purposes, but other benefits that include a private discussion forum and technical support will continue to be available for the full 12 month period.

Some developers are unhappy with Apple's compensation given the initial $500 price of the DTK program and the bugs that were experienced that made using the DTK difficult. The last time Apple had a similar program for the transition from PowerPC to Intel chips, Apple provided developers with the first Intel-based Mac for free.








The $200 credit can be used for any Mac, and the $699 Mac mini would be the cheapest option available to developers who want to pick up a new M1 Mac for continued development. The credit must be used by the end of May.

Article Link: Apple Asks Developers to Return DTK Mac Minis in Exchange for $200 Credit Toward M1 Mac
 

farewelwilliams

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ouimetnick

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Steve Jobs took care of Apple’s development community. When Jobs announced the transition from PowerPC to Intel, developers at WWDC 2005 could purchase an Intel Pentium 4 (installed in a PowerMac G5 case) DTK for $999

When Apple had those developers return those DTK, those developers were given a free Intel based iMac.

Tim Cook could either give those developers a base model M1 Mac mini or a $499 credit towards a new Mac. But no, gotta make money off of those who support your ecosystem. 🙄🙄

Remember, developers didn’t own those $999 Intel DTK or the $499 Apple Silicon DTK. Developers technically rented them for $999 and $499. But it was goodwill and to show appreciation on Job’s part to give the Intel DTK developers a free iMac.

Timmy could learn a thing or two.
 
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connormw

macrumors member
Mar 24, 2018
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Really, Steve Troughton-Smith? Apple never promised you a thing, but you're complaining about a measly $200?

Really self entitled there.

I bet he saw that Apple gave developers a full iMac after returning the Intel transition kit and he was hoping to get a Mac mini so that's why he got one. 🤦‍♂️
Really? THEY are self-entitled? Let’s look at the situation here.

Apple charged $500 for the DTK. Developers bought it to build and transition software for APPLE’S platform so that when the new devices came out, there was a strong catalog.

Now, Apple wants it back. And owners are getting less than half of what they spent on it back as a credit to be used in three months on machines that are nearly 4x as expensive as the credit.

Apple posted a record-breaking quarter this week. And yet this is how they treat their developers?
 

ikramerica

macrumors 65816
Apr 10, 2009
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Emily Litella: “Back in the Intel transition days, Apple was flush with cash and could just give away a $300 (net cost to them) Intel Mac to their developers.

But now, Apple is barely scraping by, and can only afford to make a reduced profit on selling you a first gen M1, but only before WWDC and the introduction of much better machines.”

Jane Curtin: “But Emily, Apple has so much cash they could buy many small countries.”

“Nevermind...”
 

tekcor

macrumors member
Jun 27, 2007
65
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Yeah I’m not happy about this. I now how to buy an M1 model that I had no intention of buying, just for testing, or live without having an Apple Silicon machine to test against. My plan was to wait for the new MacBook Pros this summer.

Also the article claims the discount can be used for any Mac. That’s not what the email says. It has to be used on an M1 Mac.
 

farewelwilliams

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Really? THEY are self-entitled? Let’s look at the situation here.

Apple charged $500 for the DTK. Developers bought it to build and transition software for APPLE’S platform so that when the new devices came out, there was a strong catalog.

Now, Apple wants it back. And owners are getting less than half of what they spent on it back as a credit to be used in three months on machines that are nearly 4x as expensive as the credit.

Apple posted a record-breaking quarter this week. And yet this is how they treat their developers?

Show me in the agreement where Apple promised a free machine after returning it? NO WHERE.

Getting the DTK is purely opt-in. It has always been the fact that these DTKs were to be returned after a year. Nothing has changed. You can keep the DTK for longer than may if you want to return it on the originally agreed upon date.

Nothing in the agreement changed.

I stand by my point. Developers are too self-entitled.

This is coming from me, a developer, that paid for the DTK as well.
 

ouimetnick

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Aug 28, 2008
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It really ticks me off to see developers whining about not getting a bigger discount. Apple never promised one to begin with. They should say thank you for the kind gesture and move on with their life, instead of acting like impudent children.
You must not have been around during the Intel transition in 2005-2006 then. Jobs treated the developer community much differently.
 

kirk.vino

macrumors 6502
Oct 27, 2017
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Really? THEY are self-entitled? Let’s look at the situation here.

Apple charged $500 for the DTK. Developers bought it to build and transition software for APPLE’S platform so that when the new devices came out, there was a strong catalog.

Now, Apple wants it back. And owners are getting less than half of what they spent on it back as a credit to be used in three months on machines that are nearly 4x as expensive as the credit.

Apple posted a record-breaking quarter this week. And yet this is how they treat their developers?
That’s exactly why they are one of the most, if not the most, profitable company in the world LOL
 

hot-gril

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Jul 11, 2020
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Pretty sucky, but they never agreed to anything in the beginning. Don't complain about a fate that you chose.
Edit: though this early return seems to be a change of the deal?

The whole setup seems weird, a $500 - (whatever $200 of credit is worth to you) cost for a lease? Should be a $500 deposit that they return in full at the end. But it's not a big difference really.
 
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tekcor

macrumors member
Jun 27, 2007
65
122
Show me in the agreement where Apple promised a free machine after returning it? NO WHERE.

Getting the DTK is purely opt-in. It has always been the fact that these DTKs were to be returned after a year. Nothing has changed. You can keep the DTK for longer than may if you want to return it on the originally agreed upon date.

Nothing in the agreement changed.

I stand by my point. Developers are too self-entitled.

This is coming from me, a developer, that paid for the DTK as well.

It’s not about getting nothing in return. I was ok with that when I signed up. It’s about wanting it back now. The program is only about half way through.
 

hot-gril

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Steve is dead and what matters is now. My point stands. These whiny developers should be ashamed.
Ashamed of what? Those complaints are a good thing to Apple, means the devs still care. I stopped developing for Apple's ecosystem long ago because it was more of a PitA than it was worth. No complaints from me anymore.
 
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apparatchik

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Mar 6, 2008
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They didnt promise anything but I think they could have given a base M1 Mac Mini in exchange for the returned DTK.

Some developers will now prefer to keep the DTK as its value as a collectors/oddity item is higher or way higher than the $200 they would be getting back.

Its true that most developers, and certainly those that opted-in to the DTK surely are not $200 short from starvation, but Apple is not exactly in the brink of filing Chapter 11 and they swear by their developers every WWDC.

On a different note, I think this might be confirmation of new AS Macs in June, surely at this year’s WWDC.
 
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Apple_Robert

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Sep 21, 2012
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In the middle of several books.
Ashamed of what? Those complaints are a good thing to Apple, means the devs still care. I stopped developing for Apple's ecosystem long ago because they don't treat devs well enough for me to stay.
Complaining about the coupon not being more. It is childish behavior, in my opinion. Mature adults should not act like that, especially when Apple never said there would be a coupon to begin with.
 

farewelwilliams

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It’s not about getting nothing in return. I was ok with that when I signed up. It’s about wanting it back now. The program is only about half way through.
You're free to keep the DTK until what it says on your agreement. Apple isn't forcing you to return the device by May. They're only incentivizing it. So don't take up Apple's offer and keep the machine until what it says on your agreement. Nothing has changed with your agreement with Apple.
 

ouimetnick

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Aug 28, 2008
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Steve is dead and what matters is now. My point stands. These whiny developers should be ashamed.
Ashamed of what? Both the developers and Apple need each other if the Macintosh as we know it today is to survive. Obviously developers need Apple a bit more, but macOS is NOTHING with out it’s developer community.

Steve even gave developers that attended WWCD 2003 a free iSight camera ($149 value)

It’s called showing appreciation. It’s also good business relations. Check it out sometime. 😊
 
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