Apple's App Developer Program Is Now Free in Australia

February 9, 2020

Exciting news for all schools with a Digistorm App or another school app in Australia: Apple's Developer Program membership is now available at no cost for all accredited educational institutions. The Apple Developer program is the best way for schools to publish and distribute their own apps on the App Store. You can get a brief rundown on the benefits of the program here.

Previously, schools had to pay a fee of $AUD149 per year in membership fees to join the Developer Program. Now, schools in Australia, along with other accredited educational institutions, non-for-profits and government entities can enjoy free access. 


How can my school apply for free access?

If you have an existing Developer Program Membership, you can submit a fee waiver at any time before your membership expiration date. You will need to sign in with your organisation's Apple ID. At this time, you will not be able to apply for a full or partial refund for your existing membership. This means, you can only apply for the fee waiver for future renewals.

If you don't have an existing membership, but are planning on releasing a school app, it's a good idea to apply for the Apple Developer Program. To do this, you will need to register your account as normal, selecting the option to request a fee waiver during the process. If your fee waiver is approved, you will not be charged for your membership when you complete the application.


Why should my school have a Developer Program membership?

In 2018, Apple made updates to their compliance requirements for apps published on the iOS App store. Under the new requirements, Apple required all apps to be hosted in an account registered in the name of the app's content provider—in this case, your school. Previously, app development companies, such as Digistorm were able to host schools' apps in their own account.

To remain compliant, and to ensure your school can continue to publish updates to your app, schools need to purchase a Developer Program membership in the name of your organisation.


Getting started

If you need further assistance in registering your free App Developer Program membership, or would like more information about building your own school app, the Digistorm team is always here to help. Contact your Client Success Manager or talk to our friendly Support team today! 

Not sure if a parent communication app would be right for your school? Here are some resources to get you started: