Love the VPP – The Good Parts, App Distribution

So, I’ve complained a lot about the VPP but there are some good points to it as well. I’ll go over a few of them here so there’s some ying to all my yanging.

The most obvious being the volume discount. Buy more than 20 licenses of one app at one time and they are half off. Note that free apps do not show up in the VPP store. I thought it might be cool to buy 200 copies of a free app while on sale for use in the future but Apple is smarter than me… Remember that it’s 20 or more each time. You can’t buy 20 and come back and buy 5 more and get half off. So, it’s good to buy in bulks of 20 as needed. In the case of the VPP, 11 is more expensive than 20.

Another nice thing about the VPP is the 2 accounts that you will need to run it.

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VPP Apple Configurator & Multiple Carts or Locations

I personally hate Configurator, it’s not designed well and it’s a very important tool in my life so here goes a What Not To Do, first.


The Apple Configurator tool robbed my school of @ 60×4 apps.

Here’s my mistake. I bought all the apps needed for the whole school in one lump sum. i.e. 350 copies of Pages. Then happily went to Configurator and loaded the spreadsheet. Installed on all the student iPads. Then need the remaining licenses to gift to the teachers and @ 30 for the cart. NOPE! Once they are loaded in to Configurator you can never get them back. Apple said, “sorry”.

I did this for the iWorks suite, iPhoto, & neu.Annotate before I realized what was happening.

This is what to do, in short. From the VPP account, buy the number needed for exactly what you need, just make sure, it’s over 20, even if you only need 11, 20 copies is cheaper than 11 because they are half off at 20 or more. Get the spreadsheet generated by the VPP site for the 20 then buy for the next cart or site, it will generate a new spreadsheet of 20 you can give to the computer and its copy of Configurator.



More on Configurator to come… UPDATE: To see how I really use it now check this post.