Altstore PAL With Annual Subscription, Free Delta Nintendo Emulator Launched in Europe


Altstore PAL launched in Europe on Wednesday as the first third-party iPhone app store, or alternative app marketplace, as Apple calls it. Users living in Europe who want to access apps that are not available through the official App Store can now install Altstore PAL after updating their iPhone to iOS 17.4. However, thanks to Apple's mandatory Core Technology Fee (CTF), customers will have to pay a small annual fee to access the first third-party app store to arrive in the region.

Developer Riley Testut shared details of the Altstore PAL app market in a blog post, stating that the open source app currently offers two apps: a Nintendo emulator called Delta and Clip, a clipboard manager. The former will be free to download via PAL's Altstore, while the latter will require a minimum donation of EUR 1 (roughly Rs. 90) or more, according to the developer.

The new Altstore PAL will not have Apple's content restrictions (you can't download a torrent client even through Apple's App Store on iOS) and will also allow developers to distribute apps with Patreon, specifying a minimum pledge amount which unlocks access to an application. Testut says the platform won't charge fees for donations received through Patreon, and developers can use Patreon revenue to pay Apple's CTF fee that kicks in after a million downloads.

To install Altstore PAL, users living in the EU will need to update their iPhone to iOS 17.4 and then pay EUR 1.50 (roughly Rs. 135), an annual subscription that allows the project to pay the CTF d 'Apple, says Testut. Users who don't want to pay the annual fee, as well as those who live outside the EU) can download apps via a computer (using the original Altstore app) and update them every seven days.

Unlike users, developers will not have to pay to host their apps on Altstore PAL, and there is no fee for Patreon donations. Testut says that once an app has been authorized by Apple, the processed “Alternative Distribution Package” (ADP) must be uploaded to the developer's server. Next, they need to create and upload a JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) file that contains metadata about the app, so that users can include the same source in the Altstore PAL app to start downloading and updating that app.

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