Apple Drops Mac Developer Program Cost to $99

| News

Apple revamped its Mac OS X Developer Program late on Thursday, and the most notable change was a substantial membership price reduction. Instead of paying at least US$499 annually to participate in the Apple Developer Connection Program, memberships now cost only $99 a year.

Along with the membership price cut, developer program members get access to pre-release versions of Apple software, training videos, technical support, and the Apple Developer online forums. The new program doesn't, however, include developer hardware discounts.

The redesigned Mac Developer Program should look familiar to iPhone Developer Program members because that's what the changes are modeled on. The lower price also will likely help draw in more Mac OS X application developers that couldn't afford to join the program under the old pricing scheme.

Current Apple Developer Connection program members will continue to receive the benefits they paid for until their subscription expires, and then will be able to sign up as part of the new program.

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As an ADC Select Member, this freelance Mac software tester was happy to pay $500 for OS seed release access, one hardware discount a year, but also access to the comprehensive (if not ultimate) collection of Apple hardware available at the ADC Compatibility Labs in Cupertino, an awesome resource. I wonder what’s going to happen to the three testing labs; does Apple believe that such a resource is no longer necessary for Mac developers?

Furthermore, during the PowerPC/Intel transition, a $1000 Developer Transition Kit (available to Select and Premier members) was key for my software testing business. (Then, hearing Steve announce at the next Macworld keynote that DTK’s could be traded in for a brand new $1300 Intel Core Duo iMac was an incredible surprise - thanks, Apple, that was so cool!)

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