Apple spends $50 million a year to host WWDC

Apple is spending to the tune of $50 million each year to host WWDC and is building a dedicated center at the Apple Park headquarters to assist developers visiting during WWDC.


  • Apple spends $50 million annually to host WWDC.
  • Before the pandemic, attendees were paying $1,500 per seat.
  • Apple Park is getting a new campus for developers.

An illustration for Apple's WWDC 2021 event showing a developer emoji looking at an open Mac notebook

It costs Apple $50 million to run WWDC

That’s according to Apple Fellow and former head of the company’s worldwide marketing, Phil Schiller, now charged with leading the App Store and Apple Events.

During Schiller’s testimony in the ongoing trial that Fortnite marker Epic Games put forth against Apple, the executive revealed that Apple spends about $50 million annually to host WWDC, its annual pilgrimage for developers held in the summer.

This covers the venue and other expenses associated with hosting a conference for thousands of developers. Apple’s last WWDC, held before the COVID pandemic, greeted more than 5,000 developers, and each of them paid a whopping $1,500 to attend the five-day event.

Of course, Apple didn’t have to book a venue for its recent online-only events due to the current pandemic situation. On the other hand, Apple had to invest heavily in Hollywood production because these prerecorded, polished WWDC keynotes have high production value.

This year’s online-only WWDC is kicking off with a prerecorded keynote on June 7.

A new developer center at Apple Park

Apple is now building a new center at the Apple Park headquarters to assist developers who wish to develop software in close proximity to Apple engineers, according to Bloomberg News.

Schiller also disclosed that Apple is building a facility at its Apple Park campus for developers so that they can work on their applications at a company facility and receive support from its engineers.

The new developer center is being funded by Apple’s facilities division and not the App Store. Schiller did not provide any further details pertaining to this new developer center.

In the past, Apple used to hold developer roadshows in various countries around the world so that developers who don’t live in California could still be kept in the loop.

The executive made these revealing comments in an effort to shoot down Apple’s claim that it uses the 30 percent cut from App Store proceeds to maintain the store and support its developers. As you know, Epic wants Apple to permit payment methods in apps other than iTunes billing as well as allow third-party stores such as the Epic Games Store.