Apple introduces Universal Purchases for iOS, tvOS, and macOS

Apple is allowing developers to bundle iOS, tvOS, and macOS apps together for the first time.

In the latest Xcode 11.4 beta, Apple includes support for a new feature called Universal Purchases, meaning developers can allow users to buy a piece of software on the Mac and gain access to its counterpart apps for iOS and tvOS without having to pay additional fees.

The feature will launch in March, and developers will be able to bundle iOS, macOS, tvOS and iPadOS apps under one universal purchase, meaning apps and in-app purchases can be shared across platforms, despite only being purchased once on one of the platforms.

Developers can create new apps for this service as a single app record under App Store Connect, or add platforms to their existing app records if they have the Xcode 11.4 beta.

This new feature will be valuable to both developers and consumers, creating cross-platform apps for the first time. Developers can even offer discounted bundles of the same software.

Read the patch notes for the Universal Purchases update:

  • You’ll be able to select the following categories for iOS apps: “Developer Tools” and “Graphics & Design”.
  • You’ll be able to select the following categories for macOS apps: “Books”, “Food & Drink”, “Magazines & Newspapers”, “Navigation”, and “Shopping”.
  • The “Photography” and “Video” categories on the ‌Mac App Store‌ will be combined into “Photo & Video”. Mac apps and pending updates with the – “Photography” or “Video” category selected in ‌App Store‌ Connect will be moved automatically to the combined category.
  • “Kids” will no longer be a subcategory within “Games” on the ‌Mac App Store‌.

Are you excited about this new feature? Let us know your thoughts on Twitter and check back soon for more news and rumors on everything Apple, every week.

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Everything Apple, every day. This post was written by an AppleMagazine newsroom writer.