Time to return the Developer Transition Kit

I just got the email that Apple wants the DTK back. They are offering a $200 discount off an M1 Mac that expires May 31st 2021. Those that have one, what are your thoughts on this discount?

My plan has been to pick up a new MBP when the new models release, currently rumored for July. That means I’d miss out on the discount. I could use it on an M1 mini that I wasn’t planning to buy. This is worth considering because I have a universal build of my app shipping, and I want to have something to test with just in case. Going from now until July without a way to do that seems like a bad idea. And having a permanent test computer isn’t a bad idea either.

I’m just looking for other input that I may not have thought of. I really wish Apple would have kept this going for longer. I was expecting to return this around the year mark.

Last time, didn’t Apple just do a swap?

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That’s so cheap. I’m also assuming that the “discount” will expire before the new MBPs are out. So now it’s not just cheap, it’s also nasty.

How disappointing. (Unlike my 13” M1 MBP which has been awesome so far.)

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I wasn’t a part of that program, but that’s what I’ve heard.

Yeah that’s kind of my feeling. I mean, I wasn’t expecting anything in return, as that’s what the agreement said. But this half-hearted gesture is almost worse.

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Yep - the Intel DTK unit for a Core 2 Duo iMac

I’m with @Thom_McGrath - the $200 should have been listed as a free RAM upgrade from 8GB to 16GB.

(and then make it possible for us to actually GET a 16GB unit …)


From what I’ve read the discount expires at the end of May, with the revised non-TouchBar MacBook Pros are rumored to be announced in July.

I didn’t participate in the DTK and I have chosen to not purchase one of the current models, because it’d just be another Mac for testing (I already have plenty of those).

Users are asking for UB versions of apps. If you want to test those then you need a new M1 computer anyways. My new Air is a great computer - absolutely silent and okay with Xojo.

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Well, they didn’t promise anything, so a $200 is a gift.
And probably means they simply reduce their margin a bit for the purchase of the replacement Mac.
I hope this can be ordered with the return right away, so the new one arrives the same day as the old leaves.

Is just keeping it an option?

It’s an understatement to say they don’t really work very well, plus Apple is 5-ish months ahead of schedule in asking for them back, in exchange for a measly $200. Now, in fairness, there was no guarantee that developers would get anything back from Apple but there was a widespread expectation. This all just seems unnecessarily cheap.

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You can’t legally keep it.
But no idea whether Apple enforces it.

I’d wish they would have surprised us with something more.
Like a 50% coupon on a new M1 Mac. Or a $500 coupon, so we’d get the money back.
Or even honor developers and give them a $699 Mac mini in exchange.

So let me get this right - you paid Apple $500 for access to a machine in order to test your development builds on changes to hardware they are forcing on you, so that the new machines had ‘some’ software to run on launch and now they not only want the hardware back but they are only offering you $200 (time limited) AFTER they have received it back?

So you paid $300 just to support their changes?

Surely they should be more generous here - not exactly strapped for cash are they?

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as an Apple stock holder I like their approach :wink: </sarcasm off>


Yeap. They paid the full price + a profit for testing software for Apple for free. I’m guessing that the profit part was around $200+ here, so Apple is giving up on the profit part for those devices. People say that a Mac Mini costs less than $250 to produce, so returning it will cost nothing to Apple and costed you $300 for participating in the release testing phase. Whatever path someone choose, they know that it’s an unfair game since the beginning, and must be prepared to lose, or lose a bit more.


Nope, they don’t issue the discount until they receive the machine. So we’re likely weeks without one.

A user in the MacRumors forums suggests keeping it for the year we originally paid for. They see this as a $200 reward for returning it early, or you keep yours through the length of the program. We’ll see if this is an option when Apple sends out the return instructions. There’s nothing in this email to suggest this is optional though. It sounds like they want it back now.

It’s curious why they want it rushed back. What are they going to do with these? I mean, the DTK is NOT a good machine. I used one full time for a couple days while my battery was being replaced, and it won’t run certain Electron apps like Discord or GitHub. It’s buggy as hell. So we really should be replacing these with M1 Macs. I just wish they’d give us a better way to do it.

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While I think they could so something like refurbishment and then distribute them to some social project, like schools. But I think they will just give them to some recycler to destroy. So future macOS versions don’t need to support it.

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Here. They will be resold. https://www.apple.com/shop/refurbished/mac


Completely likely, as any returned Apple device. Unless too damaged to be acceptable. A motherboard replaced, a clean up, few tests, repacked, done. The scraps from this process goes to recycling. Social anything is not an Apple business unless they can capture some social money on the process. :wink:

No, the DTK will not be resold. It looks like a Mac mini, but it isn’t. It’s an iPad Pro in a Mac mini house. It has no thunderbolt, it’s an A series processor, and doesn’t quite work the same as a true Mac. There’s no chance in hell Apple is going to resell it. It’s not a consumer device. It’s barely even a developer device. It was barely functional for most of its life.