I've read a lot about the B2B iOS apps distribution, VPP program, however I'd like to be able to verify my knowledge and hope you could help.

Let's suppose a company A develops an iOS application, publishes it to the Appstore as a B2B app (hidden for all normal users in Appstore), and adds a company B already enrolled in the VPP program to the list of entities eligible to buy the app. Furthermore, let's assume the app is free.

What's the easiest way for company B to install this free app on their devices?

The document states there are two ways (MDM and redeemable codes), however this page mentions that B2B apps can be distributed with MDM only, and yet another source I've found stated that only paid apps can be distributed with both MDM and redeemable codes (the free ones are MDM only).

So what is and what is not possible here? Can free apps be distributed by redeemable codes? I have several concerns:

  1. Let's say a user within company B wants to install the app, using a redeemable code. How does he do that? Is it done by opening the App store, entering the code and the app will automatically become visible for that user (based on Apple ID)?

  2. If yes, can users update the app through Appstore?

  3. MDM can be problematic to set up, and I'm not sure why it's a better solution than redeemable codes (Apple deprecated codes for some reason). Also, I'm not aware of a free MDM (heard about Cisco's Meraki), not sure how free that thing really is.

I'd be grateful if you could answer any of the questions above.

closed as too broad by bmike May 2 '17 at 14:42

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • Welcome to Ask Different. One question per question is by far the best. Additionally, it's not clear if you're a developer looking to understand how to develop court administrator looking how to set up your account with Apple. We can help with editing in Ask Different Meta or Ask Different Chat if this guidance isn't clear. – bmike May 2 '17 at 14:44

From https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202995 :

Free apps are available as redeemable codes solely for custom B2B apps.

That means you can distribute Free Apps with codes but only if the developer assigned your VPP Apple ID for a custom version of the App (might be the same as the generally available free version, but you need to contact the developer and request they publish it to you).

  • This is no longer possible. I have run through the VPP workflow and only paid apps can receive the redeemable codes spreadsheet. Managed Distribution is the only option for free apps in the VPP Business Store. Actually to be fair I only tested non-targeted apps. It might be possible if your Apple ID was targeted by the App developer. – Dave Oct 30 '17 at 23:23
  • To clarify on that last comment: It is still possible to get redemption codes for free apps, if those are assigned to your VPP program directly through Custom B2B. This is what "Free apps are available as redeemable codes solely for custom B2B apps." in the respective article on the Apple Support Portal refers to. – Patrick Rudolph Nov 20 '17 at 23:49

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