OS X El Capitan to Bring New Safari Extensions Gallery as Part of Unified $99 Developer Program

Apple earlier this week announced a new consolidated Apple Developer Program for iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple Watch and Safari, combining the previously separate iOS, OS X and Safari Dev Programs into one for a single $99 annual fee. The change should place more emphasis on and increase the security of Safari extensions, but some developers have voiced their frustrations about the new fee.

Safari Extensions Gallery
In particular, developers will now be required to pay $99 per year to distribute Safari extensions through the new Safari Extensions Gallery. Comparatively, the old standalone Safari Dev Program was free and did not charge developers a fee to distribute Safari extensions within or outside of the Safari Extensions Gallery. Chrome and other browsers also do not charge a fee to distribute extensions.

Reddit user honestbleeps shared the email Apple sent to Safari developers:

"Dear Developer,

As a creator of Safari Extensions, you’ve helped enrich the browsing experience for Safari users by taking advantage of development resources through the Safari Developer Program. This program is now part of the new Apple Developer Program, which combines everything you need to develop, distribute, and manage your apps on all Apple platforms.

Your existing Safari Developer Program membership will remain active until July 8, 2015 and your Safari extensions will continue to work for existing users.

You can continue building Safari extensions and bring your creativity to other Apple platforms by joining the Apple Developer Program. Join today to provide updates to your current extensions, build new extensions, and submit your extensions to the new Safari Extensions Gallery for OS X El Capitan. You can also learn how to extend your coding skills to create innovative new apps for Apple customers around the world."

Apple aims to improve the security of Safari on OS X El Capitan by implementing Secure Extension Distribution, meaning that all extensions in the Safari Extensions Gallery will now be hosted and signed by Apple. Safari extensions installed from the Safari Extensions Gallery will be updated automatically, while those distributed outside of the Gallery are ineligible for automatic updating.

Apple has created a page for developers to submit Safari extensions for OS X El Capitan in the fall, and developers can read both the Safari Extensions Review Guidelines and Safari Extensions Development Guide to prepare. Safari extensions available now will continue working for current users, and existing Safari Developer Program memberships will remain active until July 8, 2015.

Safari 9.0 will also feature content blocking extensions for both iOS and OS X, providing users with a fast and efficient way to block cookies, images, resources, pop-ups and other content. Xcode includes a Content Blocker App Extension template that contains code for developers to send their JSON files to Safari that specifies which content should be blocked. A full Safari 9.0 changelog is in the Safari Developer Library.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
66 months ago
This is bad. This means that developers of extensions like RES and uBlock are now forced to pay Apple $99 to produce free extensions for Safari.

More here:

1. RES: http://www.reddit.com/r/apple/comments/397bn6/apple_wants_me_to_pay_100_to_continue_publishing/

2. uBlock: http://www.reddit.com/r/apple/comments/398fgq/apples_new_safari_extension_policy_100year_to/ ('http://www.reddit.com/r/apple/comments/398fgq/apples_new_safari_extension_policy_100year_to/')
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
66 months ago
Safari isn't in a position where people want to develop extensions over Chrome. Adding an obstacle to develop extensions just drives the (remaining) extension developers away.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
66 months ago
From a security standpoint, this is actually good for the end user. Installed Safari Extensions can inject malicious code into any website you visit. Combined with auto-update, you never know if an extension might be compromised – which has happened to both Firefox and Chrome extensions. By requiring a paid/verified developer account and code signing, Apple gains the ability to revoke malicious extensions.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
66 months ago
Why isn't Apple doing all it can to attract new developers? They're certainly not hurting for cash.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
66 months ago
I'll place a bet on this will be reversed. If they don't this just killed Safari.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
66 months ago

Don't care.

My Mac cost thousands. I spend more on coffee a year than $99. If you cannot or will not afford that then you got no business making stuff for people's expensive hardware.

If a developer creates and produces an extension simply because they enjoy coding or wants to help others why should they be forced to pay for the privilege of giving something away for free? If they wanted the extension listed in the marketplace then I can understand it but that's not what this is, it's for all extensions. I know that RES would have no problem charging $0.99 or even giving it away for free and simply asking for a donation each year from other Reddit users but what about smaller developers who create extensions simply to get experience and exposure?

This won't keep garbage out of the Safari extension marketplace, it will keep out small devs who look at this as a hobby, the people who wanted functionality and spent the time to create it and then shared their work with others for free. Look at the app store, there are tons of garbage apps and it's curated by Apple. Malicious extensions still exist in Chrome and Firefox and they have extension marketplaces. I really don't understand this move.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Apple Officially Obsoletes First MacBook Pro With a Retina Display

Wednesday July 1, 2020 3:40 am PDT by
As expected, Apple's first MacBook Pro with a Retina display is now officially classed as "obsolete" worldwide, just over eight years after its release. In a support document, Apple notes that obsolete products are no longer eligible for hardware service, with "no exceptions." This means that any mid-2012 Retina MacBook Pro 15-inch models still out there that require a battery or other...

New Mac Ransomware Found in Pirated Mac Apps

Tuesday June 30, 2020 11:44 am PDT by
There's a new 'EvilQuest' Mac ransomware variant that's spreading through pirated Mac apps, according to a new report shared today by Malwarebytes. The new ransomware was found in pirated download for the Little Snitch app found on a Russian forum. Right from the point of download, it was clear that something was wrong with the illicit version of Little Snitch, as it had a generic installer...

Unreleased iMac With 10-Core Comet Lake-S Chip and Radeon Pro 5300 GPU Shows Up in Geekbench

Wednesday July 1, 2020 10:48 am PDT by
Benchmarks for an unreleased iMac equipped with a 10th-generation Core i9 Intel Comet Lake-S chip and an AMD Radeon Pro 5300 graphics card have surfaced, giving us an idea of what we can expect from a refreshed 2020 iMac. The Geekbench benchmarks, which appear to be legit, were found on Twitter and shared this morning by Tom's Hardware. The iMac in the benchmarks would be a successor to the...

Leaker: Future iPhone Models to Come in 'Exquisite' Thinner Box

Wednesday July 1, 2020 1:57 am PDT by
Leaker L0vetodream this morning posted a tweet corroborating recent rumors that Apple's "iPhone 12" lineup won't come with EarPods or a charger in the box, adding that this will also eventually apply to the existing second-generation iPhone SE. L0vetodream also claims that future iPhone packaging will be "thinner" and "exquisite," which would make sense if Apple's handsets are set to come in ...

Apple's A12Z Under Rosetta Outperforms Microsoft's Native Arm-Based Surface Pro X

Monday June 29, 2020 10:31 am PDT by
Apple's Developer Transition Kit equipped with an A12Z iPad Pro chip began arriving in the hands of developers this morning to help them get their apps ready for Macs running Apple Silicon, and though forbidden, the first thing some developers did was benchmark the machine. Multiple Geekbench results have indicated that the Developer Transition Kit, which is a Mac mini with an iPad Pro chip, ...

Kuo: iPhone 12 Models Won't Include Charger in Box, 20W Power Adapter Will Be Sold Separately

Sunday June 28, 2020 7:56 am PDT by
iPhone 12 models will not include EarPods or a power adapter in the box, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today in a research note obtained by MacRumors. This lines up with a prediction shared by analysts at Barclays earlier this week. Kuo said that Apple will instead release a new 20W power adapter as an optional accessory for iPhones and end production of its existing 5W and 18W power adapters...

Rosetta 2 Benchmarks Surface From Mac Mini With A12Z Chip

Monday June 29, 2020 7:48 am PDT by
While the terms and conditions for Apple's new "Developer Transition Kit" forbid developers from running benchmarks on the modified Mac mini with an A12Z chip, it appears that results are beginning to surface anyhow. Image Credit: Radek Pietruszewski Geekbench results uploaded so far suggest that the A12Z-based Mac mini has average single-core and multi-core scores of 811 and 2,781...

Display Analyst Once Again Says No 120Hz ProMotion Display Coming to iPhone 12 Pro

Wednesday July 1, 2020 11:29 am PDT by
Apple's iPhone 12 models will not feature an upgraded 120Hz ProMotion display, according to display analyst Ross Young. Young previously said that Apple would not implement ProMotion technology until it adopted low-power LTPO display technology, a move Apple is not expected to make until 2021. In a tweet shared this morning, Young said that the none of his contacts have been able to...

Apple Seeds Third Betas of iOS and iPadOS 13.6 to Developers [Update: Public Beta Available]

Tuesday June 30, 2020 10:06 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the third betas of upcoming iOS and iPadOS 13.6 updates to developers, three weeks after seeding the second betas and over a month after releasing iOS/iPadOS 13.5 with Exposure Notification API, Face ID updates, Group FaceTime changes, and more. iOS and iPadOS 13.6 can be downloaded from the Apple Developer Center or over the air once the proper developer profile has been...

The New York Times Ends Apple News Partnership and Pulls All Articles

Monday June 29, 2020 11:17 am PDT by
The New York Times today announced that it is pulling out of Apple News, as the service does not "align with its strategy of building direct relationships with paying readers." Starting today, articles from The New York Times will no longer show up in the Apple News app. The news site says that Apple has given it "little in the way of direct relationships with readers" and "little control...