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How to Become an iOS App Developer

This section explains what you need and how you can become an iOS app developer. If you're a new developer, you need the tools of the trade:

  • A Mac desktop or laptop system to develop on.

    It must be a machine with an Intel processor, running OS X Mountain Lion or Mavericks with at least 6GB of free space. In terms of memory, 4GB is the minimum, but 8GB is better (Xcode likes to feast on memory).

  • An Apple developer registration.

You can easily register as an Apple developer, and there's no fee for getting started. You can then develop iOS applications and test them on the simulator to your heart’s content.

However, if want to test your apps on real devices or allow a few users to test them on their devices, or if you want to apply to have your app put in the Apple Store, you must pay an annual fee of $99 for an individual license or $299 for an enterprise license. This fee must be paid in local currency wherever the iOS Developer Program is available.

When you're ready, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Apple Developer website, scroll all the way to the bottom of the page, and click the Register button.

  2. Sign in using your Apple ID or create a new one.

    You may already have an Apple ID — say, the one you use for iTunes. You can use that one, or you can create a new one just for development. If you want to create a new Apple ID, click Create Apple ID and complete the steps to create a new one.

  3. When you have your Apple ID, sign in and create your developer profile.

  4. To enroll in a paid developer membership, go to Apple Developer Programs.

    The Apple Developer page appears, showing all the developer programs Apple supports.

    If you plan to create apps and test them in the simulator without paying to register as a developer, skip to Step 13 and download and install Xcode.

  5. Click the iOS Developer Program box.

    The enrollment page appears.

  6. Click Enroll Now.

  7. You’ll see an information page that outlines the steps to become a developer.

  8. Select Continue. If a screen appears asking you to sign in again, do so.

  9. Click Individual to enroll.

    The license agreement page appears.

  10. Check the I Agree box at the bottom of the page and click Agree.

    A profile page appears.

  11. Fill out your professional profile and click Register.

    You’ll be asked to fill out several profile items such as your experience with iOS, what kinds of apps you plan to develop, and what other platforms you plan to develop for.

  12. After you complete your profile, a page appears asking you to fill in your credit card information. Provide the required information.

    If credit card information is already on file, you can skip this step.

  13. Follow the steps to purchase the iOS Developer Program.

    First, you add the program to your shopping cart; then you follow the steps to check out and pay for the program. When you’re finished, you’re taken back to the iOS Developer Center.

  14. From the iOS Developer Center, download Xcode and other developer resources.

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