Fee Waivers for Apple Developer Program Now Available for Government, Nonprofit Organizations and Educational Institutions

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jan 3, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Apple today announced the official availability of fee waivers for its Apple Developer Program for nonprofit organizations, accredited educational institutions, and government entities in the United States who plan to distribute free apps on the App Store.

    Qualified organizations are able to apply for the waiver, which will provide a free annual membership to the Developer Program. Apple normally charges developers $99 per year.

    Apple's plan to offer free developer memberships to government and nonprofit apps in the United States was first highlighted in late December when its App Store guidelines were updated.

    Apple's new Membership Fee Waiver webpage includes details on which organizations are eligible for the discount. Requirements include a EIN/Tax ID number, a D-U-N-S number, and legal entity status. Apple will review each fee waiver request.

    Entities that receive the fee waiver may not publish paid apps or apps with in-app purchases, and members of the Apple Developer Enterprise Program are not eligible. The program is also not available to individuals and sole proprietors/single person businesses.

    Fee waivers are currently limited to the United States, but Apple says waivers will be added for other countries "as they become available."

    Article Link: Fee Waivers for Apple Developer Program Now Available for Government, Nonprofit Organizations and Educational Institutions
     
  2. FelixDerKater macrumors 68020

    FelixDerKater

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  3. ArtOfWarfare macrumors G3

    ArtOfWarfare

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    #3
    Why all this legal mess? Make it free to distribute free apps, end of story.
     
  4. Cosmosent macrumors 6502

    Cosmosent

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    NOT that Apple will act on it, but I sent an email to Tim Cook yesterday, requesting that Developers be allowed to sell their iOS apps off their own website ... even said that I'd be OK if Apple took a 15% cut if they handled all of the financial transactions.

    Such a move would significantly help App Developer companies with Unique & Innovative apps.

    As many know, the iOS App Store is now almost strictly "curated," AND that Apple / Tim Cook has had, and continues to have, a complete Stranglehold on App Discovery.

    --> Offering "Independence" from their iOS App Store would be the single-best thing Apple could do for their Developer community. <--

    Apple's recent attempts to try to Prop-up the App Store, such as Pre-Orders, which basically ONLY applies to Games, and the expansion of Search Ads, which in general is a very stupid thing, won't save the iOS App Store.

    The ONLY way the iOS App Store gets fixed is if the significance of Ratings are directly tied to Usage ... if a User rated the app, but then hasn't used it for 30 days, that rating disappears from the Rankings algorithm.

    That would clean-up the Rankings mess in a heart beat, but for whatever reason, Apple either can't, or won't, fix it.
     
  5. Kapangas macrumors member

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    #5
    No.
     
  6. LogicalApex macrumors newbie

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    #6
    What do you mean by this? That Apple would allow you to "sideload" apps in a manner similar to macOS or Windows where you can purchase, download, and install the app without any interaction with the "App Store"?

    If they were to go this route... How would they be able to vet the applications in any way? Not saying that their vetting is perfect...
     
  7. chrono1081 macrumors 604

    chrono1081

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    Good! Hopefully this takes care of one of the enormous hassles of dealing with tax exempt purchases with Apple. It would be great if you could just register your account as tax exempt and use a credit card to pay but that's not the case, what happens is you spend forever on the phone with them getting bounced back and forth until someone who is a manager takes the call and gets the purchase sorted out.

    Unfortunately this doesn't work well, this is how you end up like the Play store with tons of shovelware.

    Although the Apple app store isn't free from shovelware, its a lot less prevalent. The $99 is a deterrent.
     
  8. kasakka macrumors 68000

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    #8
    How about waiving the stupid fee for individuals who develop non-commercial apps? $99 is a lot if you just want to make an app for iOS that only you use.
     
  9. jonblatho macrumors 6502a

    jonblatho

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    #9
    Facebook and Twitter are free apps without in-app purchases. Should they not have to pay the $99/year despite making immense money off of those apps?

    Also: If an eligible organization is big enough to consider putting its own app on the App Store, this “legal mess” is trivial. They should already have an EIN and legal entity status, and it’s highly likely that they also already have a D-U-N-S number. If not, it’s easy to get. Boom, requirements satisfied.
     
  10. OldSchoolMacGuy macrumors 68040

    OldSchoolMacGuy

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    #10
    No thanks. Then you end up with so much garbage that it'd take months to get your app approved.

    Legit developers are just fine paying $99 a year for what they get in return. We make it back in minutes.
     
  11. Vjosullivan macrumors 6502

    Vjosullivan

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    #11
    Apple have already sold you the hardware and the operating system. The reason you bought them was to run the applications like Facebook and Twitter (and everything else). So, Apple are already profiting directly from free software.
     
  12. jonblatho macrumors 6502a

    jonblatho

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    #12
    Next time you go to see an accountant, please tell them exactly what you told me.
     
  13. chrono1081 macrumors 604

    chrono1081

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    #13
    You've been able to do this for years now. Tim Cook announced it in I think 2013 or 2014 that you no longer had to pay for a developer account if you were just learning and were uploading to your own device.
     
  14. ArtOfWarfare macrumors G3

    ArtOfWarfare

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    That's actually a fantastic example of why the flat $99/year is so absurd. Apple charges the developers making several $B annually the same exact amount that they charge everyone else, even though Apple has to spend a lot more on bandwidth for people downloading Facebook than they do for an app that gets a few downloads per year.

    But yeah. As another developer said earlier, the biggest issue with apps on iOS is the fact they have to come from the app store. Why can't it be handled the same way as on Mac OS?

    How many apps does anyone use on their Mac that came from the Mac App Store vs from Steam or another store or a totally independent website? For iOS devices to become my primary computers, they're going to have to actually be as flexible as my computer. Part of my computer's flexibility comes from the fact that I can download and run whatever niche software I want, whether Apple approved it or not.
     
  15. LogicalApex macrumors newbie

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    Facebook isn't a great example here, but developers would likely make the argument that Apple's fee structure being two part helps to balance this reality out. The $99 fixed fee is the same no matter how little or how many apps a developer creates. So an indy developer with 50 apps pays the same $99 as does LastPass with 1, but the 15% (or whatever it is) revenue cut that Apple makes will be borne more by larger and more successful developers. For very large developers like Adobe they could likely get those numbers down to 1% or 2% due to their size giving them negotiating power with payment processors if they were able to sell outside of the iOS store.

    So the developer fee is only 1 part of the larger story... No plan they come up with would be perfect for both groups.

    The mac app store isn't working for the same reason the Windows Store isn't working... The Desktop has an established method of interacting with its Eco System. They would get more traction banning all but the app store there, but that wouldn't fly due to the large amount of ecosystem development around the existing model. So it is a lot easier to have this locked approach from the start as you have with iOS.

    Both have their own warts... You don't need to fight with serial numbers and activation limits and servers on iOS due to the App Store sorting this out for you as a consumer. From a developer perspective you lose a lot of creative licensing schemes which can suck. But you also gain lower piracy rates as a trade off.
     

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