July 23, 2020

In this article I will tell you a success story how we helped our developer enroll in the Apple Developer Program as an individual. To be more specific, I will describe all the steps we have taken to enroll in the Apple Developer Program and activate the account.

Thousands of developers around the world are having issues with Enrollment in the Apple Developer Program over the past 6-7 months. The main problem when enrolling is that your payment for membership (99 USD) in the Apple Developer Program doesn't go through and each time you pay it gets canceled.

Below I will describe step-by-step actions that we have taken to enroll in the Apple Developer Program (as an individual) and how we managed to successfully pay for membership in the program.

Step 1 – we create a new Apple ID

1. To begin with, we clear cache in Safari. Next, we create a new Apple ID on an Apple device (iPhone, Mac, etc.). When registering, we use gmail as our e-mail address and fill in the suggested fields with personal information. The provided information should fully correspond to the developer's government issued, valid, photo ID. We indicate the real address of the developer. All the information we provide should be legal and accurate.

creating an Apple ID

When creating an Apple ID, we need to make sure that two-factor authentication is enabled on our Apple device. You can read more about how to enable two-factor authentication on your Apple device here

Please note: when creating a developer account, we must use an Apple device with an available activation limit for new accounts. By default, you can activate two-factor authentication for up to 3 accounts on one device.

2. After creating an Apple ID, we should activate accounts in the App Store and iTunes. To do this, we should indicate a credit (debit) card and billing address for payment method linked to the created Apple ID. The credit card should belong to the developer whose name was used when creating an Apple ID. The developer's first and last name indicated when creating an Apple ID and on the credit card should be the same. The credit card can be in any currency, the main thing here is that the card can be charged in US dollars.

3. Now we should check if we can pay using the credit card linked to our Apple ID in the App store and in the iTunes store. We should try to pay for the subscription to one or two cheap apps in the App store. We should also pay for music (1 song) in the iTunes store. The important thing here is that the payment for the apps and the music should be successful. This proves that the card can be charged. Also it is important that you receive an invoice from Apple that the card was charged. The invoice is sent to your e-mail indicated when creating an Apple ID. As soon as we receive invoices from Apple, we move on to step 2 - we enroll in the Apple Developer Program.

Step 2 - Enrollment in the Apple Developer Program

1. We go to https://developer.apple.com/ and press "Account", sign in with our Apple ID we have created and select "Enroll as an Individual". As I said earlier, in our case, we decided that it would be faster and easier to enroll as an individual rather than to enroll as an organization.

2. When enrolling, we fill in the developer's personal information. This personal information should be the same as the info filled in when creating an Apple ID (name, last name, address). All the information should be legal and accurate, taken from the legal, government issued, photo ID of the developer.

3. Finally we end up on the screen with payment for Membership in the Apple Developer Program. Here we use the same credit card that we used for payments in the App store and in the iTunes store. Apple has already charged you from this credit card for the apps in the App Store and for the music in iTunes.

When we pay for membership in the Apple Developer Program we notice there is no field for CVV of the credit card.
At first, the status of our payment may be "Transaction complete", but it changes to "canceled" in 24 hours.

Step 3 – Communication with Apple support

1. When the status of our payment for the Apple Developer program is "Canceled", we write an e-mail to Apple technical support ("Contact us" in the developer account). In the e-mail we describe the problem - the payment for the Apple Developer Program did not go through. And we explain that we used the same payment method in the App Store and iTunes. In this e-mail we provide people from Apple support with full information about our paid subscriptions to the apps, when the payments were made, the order ID of each purchase, the cost and where we bought them (App Store or iTunes). We attach screenshots with invoices received from Apple and a screenshot of our paid subscriptions. You can find your paid subscriptions in the settings of the Apple ID.

2. Usually Apple support replies with a copy-paste answer. They say that unfortunately they cannot obtain your payment for the Apple Developer program. Our next step – we write an e-mail from the gmail account used when creating an Apple ID to the technical support of the Apple Developer Program. I found information about different e-mail addresses of Apple technical support regarding payments here

Before sending this letter, I recommend you to make one more payment in the iTunes store or in the App Store using the same payment method. After the payment is made we can go ahead and make a payment for membership in the Apple Developer Program. It is very likely that the first payment will be successful and the second will be canceled.

So this means that our card can be successfully charged for subscription in the App store. But on the same day it cannot be charged for Apple Developer Program.

When we write an e-mail to Apple Developer Program support, we should provide full information about all payments, as described above. In addition, we should mention that using the same payment method on the same day the payment for the subscriptions went through, but the payment for Apple Developer program did not go through and was canceled.

3. If we get an answer from the Senior Advisor with Apple Developer Program – this means that we are almost there. The Senior Advisor will ask us to upload our valid government issued id using the link provided in his e-mail. And will ask us to reply to his e-mail. We should follow his instructions.

Within 24-48 hours our credit card is finally charged for Membership in the Apple Developer Program, the payment is successful and the developer's account is activated!

If we get an answer from support, but the person answering is not a Senior Advisor and the e-mail again is a copy-paste letter with general information without any clear recommendations, then our next step is – we should order a call to support in the Developer's account. And we should be prepared to speak English and discuss all the payment issues with technical support over the phone. The main point here is that we need to talk to a Senior Advisor, you should ask the support or even insist to talk to the Senior Advisor.

In our case we took all the steps described above and we were lucky that we received an e-mail from the Senior Advisor with Apple Developer Program. We didn't have to call to the support. And we cannot say for sure that if we take the same steps again, we will also be lucky. It took us a month to resolve the issue, but we believe it could be even faster.

However, we are pretty much sure that if you do everything according to our instructions, if you provide legal and accurate information when filling out all the forms, if you communicate with Apple support in English correctly, provide strong arguments about payments, then you will be able to successfully resolve the payment issue for the Apple Developer Program.

If you need help in enrollment in the Apple Developer Program, please contact us by e-mail info@simple.solutions or by phone. We will be happy to assist you!

Natalia Khizhevskaya