Apple Developer Membership No Longer Required to Build Apps, Test on Devices


Alongside iOS 9 beta, Apple has released the tools developers need to create apps they can submit to the App Store. This year, however, is somehow different. It started with Apple announcing that it will make Swift 2.0 open source, but there is more: with Xcode 7, everyone can install and run apps on their iPhone or iPad. For free.

apple developer program

What this means is that you don’t need to sign up for the Apple Developer Program — which, by the way, was updated to combine all platforms into a single program — and pay $99 per membership per year, like you previously needed to.

Starting this year, if you have an app idea, you just need to download Xcode 7, and you can turn it into an app that works on your iPhone or iPad. The only requirement is to sign in with your Apple ID.

Presumably, this means that you can use it only on your device, but this is still fun. To reach a wider audience — aka to see your app in the App Store — however, you will still be required to enrol in Apple’s Developer Program.


  • Nick

    Does this mean there’s a way that apps that formerly required jailbreaking could be installed?

  • Whatever app you create and install would be contained by the limits of iOS. I don’t know how this would apply to jailbroken apps.

  • Scoobaman

    For example kodi (formerly Xbmc) you can sign an ipa file if you are a developer. Does that mean we can sign it without being a developer?

  • chikaraginger

    If you have the source files, I don’t see why you wouldn’t be able to do this. Wow! Apple is becoming more and more developer friendly! Must be because of the enterprise push. In house dev teams don’t want to push everything to the App Store.

  • chikaraginger

    Yeah, the exception would be apps that were rejected from the app store because of content. I think those apps should run just fine.

  • And it has been confirmed by a developer it is possible to load third party stuff like GBA emulators. Post coming!