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Thursday, July 16, 2009, 04:00 pm PT (07:00 pm ET)

Apple now selling access to WWDC presentations via iTunes

Apple has announced the availability of iPhone and Mac development sessions, recorded at this year's WWDC, for members of its Apple Developer Connection programs, including the free ADC Online and Registered iPhone developers.

Premier ADC members and WWDC attendees already have access to the session videos, but members of the Select ADC, free Online ADC and $99 Student Member programs for Mac OS X development, as well as the separate $99 Registered iPhone developer circle, have to pay.

Buying access to the WWDC sessions costs either $299 for the iPhone or Mac sessions, or $499 for the complete set of both. A full WWDC ticket costs $1595, with a $1295 early bird offer typically sold through April. In both of the last two years however, WWDC has sold out, making attendance impossible for many.

By selling access to the sessions for $500, Apple is reserving the value of attending. Some developers report that they find more value in talking to engineers at scheduled lab sessions rather than sitting through the lecture sessions that usually end with a brief question and answer session.

In previous years, Apple has lagged behind in making sessions available in iTunes after the event. This year, the company has managed to make its WWDC catalog of sessions available within a month and a half, its fastest turnaround yet.

To order sessions, users must sign up for one of the ADC programs, including the free Online ADC package. After buying access, Apple forwards the user an iTunes provisioning key that enables downloading and viewing of the session packages' videos and Keynote slide presentations.

The WWDC sessions require iTunes 8.2 and enough disk space to accommodate the downloads, with the combined package weighing in at 30GB. The Mac session package itself is 13GB, and iPhone session package is 17GB.

WWDC videos