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Are any of you using (or considering) Apple's App Store Volume Purchasing option?
If so, I'd love some feedback. If not, how are you managing teacher purchases of apps? Do they have to make a request before purchasing, or just submit receipts after the fact?

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We just launched a 1 to 1 program for the entire school and this latest move by iTunes certainly will help with some of the distribution challenges we face with students and parents. We issued a little over 300 ipads last week and so far everything has gone very well. We will most likely breakdown our program by division and then ask teachers to make requests, However, we are just in the beginning stages of putting the purchase plan together. The biggest challenge we have had is educating a small number of parents about iTunes and setting up individual accounts. I will let you know as soon as i hear what we are planning.

I look forward to hearing about your experience, Pete. Good luck with the new iPad program!
Wondering how this works with a cart of iPads all of which are being updated from iTunes account?
Fred, my understanding is that a single iTunes account can put its apps on as many mobile devices as it wants - out to infinity, as far as I can tell. For our faculty program I had the teachers sync to their own machine first, then I signed the central iTunes account in on each device and downloaded each of the apps I had already purchased. I wanted to accomplish two objectives - giving each teacher access to a central suite of apps, but also giving them the ability to sync their personal apps, docs, and other data from their work machine.

For a set of student ipads pn a cart, I'd think the setup would be much simpler: all the ipads in the cart synced to one machine using one of those big usb syncing hubs, and that central machine distributing apps from a single iTunes account each time they're plugged back in.
Jim, Thanks so much for sharing this information. There is just one thing I'm not clear about. When you take an iPad that a teacher has already synced to their iTunes, it can then be plugged into another computer and get apps via the iTunes account on that computer as well? I thought an iOS device could only be synced to one computer? Could you just break down the process in a little more detail?

BTW, I talked with our Apple rep on Friday afternoon and now have a pretty good understanding of how the volume purchasing program works. I'll share what I've learned tomorrow or Monday.


No, actually what I've been doing is logging in to the App Store on the ipads themselves, but signing out their accounts and signing mine in so that they can download the apps I've purchased. It's admittedly clunky - eg, whenever an app updates, I have to type in my password on that machine for the update to load. And then I have to remember to sign myself out, too. But technically, a single machine can store apps from lots of different accounts that way. Which is why I'm a little confused about how Apple described the app volume purchasing model - the "honor system" is beside the point for their consumer model, which seems to be what has driven all their decision making so far. My understanding is they look at it like a family - mom & dad buy an app, and all the kids in the house are free to put it on their ipads. I'd think all a school would have to do is buy a single app, not 20 copies. Why should schools pay for something on an honor basis that Apple doesn't require for individuals?
Jim, Thanks for clarifying. I didn't know you could put apps from multiple app store accounts on one iPad.

I've heard, from an Apple engineer, that the licensing approach you describe above is valid for schools. I've also heard from another Apple rep that it isn't. Given that Apple is officially now pushing the new solution my guess is that this is the safe way for schools to go in order to be compliant.
Had a long talk with our Apple rep on Friday afternoon and now have a pretty good understanding of how this works.

Essentially it is an honor system when it comes to "labs" of iPads. A lab (or cart) of iPads is imaged off of one computer's iTunes account and whatever apps are on that computer get imaged out to all the synced iPads.

So for example, say you want 20 copies of Pages on a lab of iPads.

1. The school's ASVPP program manager purchases 20 copies of Pages from an Apple website created for this program.
2. The program manager distributes a code obtained from this website to whoever is in charge of the master computer for the 20 iPads.
3. That person purchases one copy of an app from the App store with the code supplied by the ASVPP manager.
4. That single purchased copy is pushed out to all the managed iPads when they are synced.

There is an Apple webinar this Thursday which is supposed to go over all of this in great detail. The URL is:


Found this site when looking for usb syncing hubs. (and

Do you have a favorite brand?
Not yet, Fred. We actually don't have an ipad cart yet, I've just read about classrooms setting up these hubs before (mostly for ipods, but it's the same principle I believe).

Have you purchased this brand? We are looking for the same type of device to battle the "syncing" issues at school.



We have not purchased anything yet. Still researching.



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