Notes on setting up in-app purchase on iOS: iTunes Connect

A series of posts focused on different aspects of setting up in-app purchases for iPhone & iPad apps. This is not a detailed walkthrough but just notes that outline the process. Be sure to read the in-app programming guide for a thorough overview, though be warned that the official guide doesn’t clearly cover every aspect of the process.

This post covers only the iTunes Connect part of the process.

In iTunes Connect you will need to setup the product you want to provide for in-app purchase (IAP). Basically, this is a process of registering your IAP product with Apple.

  • Login to iTunes Connect
  • Click Manage Your Applications
  • Select your app
    • This could be problematic if you’re setting up for a brand new app that is not yet in the app store. Go ahead and create the iTunes listing for the base app but do not submit the app. You’ll see some contradictory, outdated info on the Web that says you need to submit an app and then reject the binary in order to proceed with testing an in-app purchase. That is not true based on my own experiences.
  • Click Manage In-App Purchases
  • Click Create New
  • Select the type of IAP. Most of what I do are non-consumable IAPs.
  • Enter a Reference Name. This is for internal use only & can be named whatever you like. I usually enter something descriptive, e.g, Av de Mayo walking tour.
  • Enter Product ID. ****extremely important**** This is the unique identifier for your IAP. It can be anything but you should make it unique not only to your IAPs but also to any other IAPs in the iTunes store. The best thing is to base it on your bundle ID, though it’s important to note that it has absolutely no technical relationship to the bundle ID of your app. You can use a reverse domain name and that works very well. e.g., com.endlesshybrids.avdemayo. Note that you will use the product ID in your code, so get this right.
  • Cleared for Sale: select YES. If not, you will not be able to test your IAP.
  • Select Price Tier.
  • In-App Purchase Details. Select Add Language.
    • Select Language of your IAP.
    • Enter Display Name. This is the name people will see in the App Store for the in-app purchase listing. It may also be displayed in your app. Think carefully about this from a marketing perspective.
    • Enter Description.
  • Enter optional Review Notes. I’m not sure if the app review team really needs test user accounts and password, though the IAP programming guide indicates to add that here.
  • Screenshot for Review.

Once all that information is entered then you can put the IAP into Ready to Submit status.

Adding an IAP to an app 

****very important****

I missed this the first time I tried submitting an IAP and my app got rejected. So save yourself a couple of weeks of app review time and pay attention. When your app version, either a new app or an update, is in Prepare for Upload an option appears on the app details screen: In-App Purchases. Select Edit and select the IAPs you want to submit with this version. Note that this option does not appear in every state of an app version.