Apple Developer accounts for brigade apps


I wanted to see if anyone could tell me if they were able to get the fee waived for Apple when setting up to deploy an app int he app store? Reading online, seems Apple will waive the fee for non-profits.
Anyone been successful in this? Can you share the details/steps/pros/cons?


Code for Cary (NC)


I’ll look into this from the CfA side. It looks pretty straightforward to apply as an organization. Assuming they grant us a fee waiver, I imagine we could probably create you an account that isn’t subject to the fee.

Someone recently asked about this at OpenOakland too… I’d love to have this fee not be an impediment to your progress.


Should we talk about maintaining network-wide shared developer accounts for native mobile apps?

Losing access to developer accounts that mobile apps were published under by previous brigade members is a big source of headaches, as not having the logins or not having the signing keys can mean you can’t update or delist an app that was previously published

I think it would be a great idea if we had a national “CfA Brigade” developer account for Apple and Android and formed a small working group tasked with handling publishing apps and hanging on to credentials to provide continuity for future brigade leaders/members that may want to update or delist previously published apps


This sounds like a good idea to me.

However, at Code for BTV our approach is to never own the developer account that publishes something to the app store. Instead, we help the client establish an account, and when we finish, everything is on them. We often have keys to that account, of course, so we can publish on their behalf. But ultimately, the accounts we put stuff in the app stores from are not our own.


When you say “the client” are you talking about project-level partner orgs?

I like that approach for projects that have an intuitional owner, though I worry sometimes whether they have the capacity to be responsible custodians of technical credentials/services.

For brigades and projects though that are just a collection of brigade members, I feel like we’re failing our duty to our members if people are contributing to a project they see as community-owned where something vital to its operation like mobile dev accounts are personally owned/controlled by one of the other members. Not that there’s often any malicious intent behind it, but eventually life happens if no one technical is in position to extract credentials at the right time everyone’s work gets effectively locked up


Yeah - for us we don’t formally adopt and work on a project unless there is a community partner who effectively will own it at the end. We avoid doing projects that are just cool ideas the brigade has. Maybe if we were bigger there would be some ongoing projects that had no community client.

I agree with you that if you do have projects that are meant for a broad audience, they can’t have logistical bottlenecks built-in like being attached to a particular volunteer’s accounts. That’s bad…