In the last part (at least for now) of our little series in regard of founding our own company, we will talk a little about the “easy going” or bigger problems while setting up developer accounts for the Google Play Store as well as Apple iTunes.
Normally you always say and hear that Apple is so easy to use and everything else can be quite some work to understand the process. We have to admit that in this case it felt the exact opposite.
First we set up our Google Play Developer Account and were done within a few minutes. You sign into any Google associated account that you want to use, check some boxes, pay 25$ one-time registration fee and you are more or less ready to go.
Next up was to sign up for the iOS Developer Program. We can’t say anything concerning signing up as an individual, but signing up as a company will take some time to get done. The first thing you have to do is to get a D-U-N-S number – to that point we had never heard of that before, but it stands for Data Universal Numbering System and for the rest you can check Wikipedia for yourself.
Luckily we only had to wait one business day to get our D-U-N-S number assigned. Then we could start the sign-up process, but you don’t get very far too quickly, because Apple will do checks if the person trying to sign up a company is really allowed to sign up that company. This can take several days – until we finally got a call from an Irish phone number from the area of Cork that told us that we are allowed now to pay the 80 Euro/year fee. After paying that and waiting a few minutes the account was ready to go……or not.
Depending on what you want to do with your iOS development, you may need to sign some contracts. Here we ran into lots of problems. Like we mentioned in part 1 of this series, our company is call Panda & Penguin Production Unternehmergesellschaft (haftungsbeschränkt) or UG(haftungsbeschränkt). This official name was causing lots of troubles, since some of interfaces of Apple couldn’t deal with the fanciness of the name.
As you can see in the first screenshot, the letter “ä” is all what it needs to break this form, since it was impossible to change the grayed out legal entity name. Even some not so common ways to change the name were tried – and on the first look worked great – but without any success.
This meant to contact Apple and ask for help – how difficult can it be? At least for the finance department the problem was unsolveable:
- the first reply came quickly, just a few hours: don’t use the letter “ä”
- the second reply took longer (who knows, perhaps our reply “your answer is not really helping”, was a little bit on the offensive side) and was almost as good:
- press the “Save” button three times
- if it doesn’t work, then contact someone else
So that we did, we contacted a different Apple department, told them the same story again and after a day or so they changed the “ä” into an “ae” and we could proceed….at least for a few seconds, since the error message didn’t disappear. We also had to remove the “(” and “)” to make the form work. After changing that as well we were finally good to go 🙂