Despite the loss of Macworld/iWorld, which many in the industry continue to mourn, there’s no shortage of Apple-focused conferences for professionals to gather with peers. We have once again collected details — or at least dates — for all the Apple-related conferences we can find; if we’ve missed any, let us know in the comments. We’ve sorted them by date so you can scroll through and see which might fit into your schedule.
If you want to meet part of the TidBITS gang, Adam Engst will be at the ACEs Conference in May, and he and Tonya are likely to go to MacTech Conference in November. Josh Centers is planning to attend the iBooks Author Conference in October. If regular TidBITS contributors are asked to speak at any others, we’ll be sure to mention that in a future article.
MacTech Pro: March–September 2017 -- A regional event series from the folks behind MacTech Conference, MacTech Pro is designed for professional Apple techs and consultants. Events are single-track, hotel-based seminars, and the all-day schedule includes lunch. Topics will include creating a storage strategy, deployment methods, scripting Python, IoT and home automation, security, troubleshooting, and more.
Early bird pricing is $299, with pre-registration pricing at $399, and regular pricing at $499. Educational and non-profit pricing is $199. The March 15th event in Seattle, WA has already passed, but the remaining MacTech Pro events will take place in eight cities throughout the United States:
- April 5 in Boston, MA
- May 3 in Atlanta, GA
- May 24 in Washington, D.C.
- June 28 in Denver, CO
- July 26 in New York, NY
- August 9 in Orlando, FL
- August 30 in Chicago, IL
- September 27 in San Francisco, CA
Mdevcon: March 16–17, 2017 -- Held in Amsterdam on March 16th and 17th for mobile app developers, Mdevcon offered sessions for both iOS and Android developers. Tickets cost €190 (US$200) for conference-only tickets (sessions on the 17th) or €410 (US$440) to add the tutorial day on the 16th.
iOSCon: March 30–31, 2017 -- Returning for its fourth year, iOSCon takes place at CodeNode in London for two days. The program features a number of sessions on building apps with Swift. Tickets cost £650 (US$800) plus VAT.
Úll: April 10–11, 2017 -- The two-day Úll conference takes place in Killarney, Ireland at The Europe hotel and resort. Úll is designed for “people who build and love great products… presented through an Apple-shaped lens.” Frankly, it sounds like big fun.
The speakers this year include refreshingly new faces; we encourage you to read their bios. Headline speakers include Christina Warren of Gizmodo, Horace Dediu of Asymco, and Jason Snell of Six Colors. Tickets cost €799 (US$855) without accommodations or €1149 (US$1230) with two nights at The Europe hotel.
CocoaConf: April 21–22, 2017 -- Focusing on training for iOS and Mac developers, CocoaConf will be providing three tracks and over 30 breakout and general sessions for its April session in Chicago. (CocoaConf also has a conference in Yosemite National Park on March 20th through 23rd, but tickets are sold out.)
Speakers for the Chicago event include developers Chris Adamson, Jeff Biggus, Janie Clayton, James Dempsey, Laura Savino, and T.J. Usiyan.
Registration for CocoaConf costs $650, or $850 if you want to attend a pre-conference workshop held the day before. The workshop is also available on its own for $350.
App Builders Switzerland: April 24–25, 2017 -- Another conference for mobile app developers, App Builders Switzerland will take place in Zürich on April 24th and 25th. It offers two tracks: one for iOS developers and another for Android developers. Tickets cost 349 CHF (about US$350) and include lunch and snacks.
iOSDevCamp Colorado Springs: April 28-29, 2017 -- A free, informal event for iOS developers, the eight-annual iOSDevCamp Colorado Springs will take place the evening of April 28th and all day on the 29th. Expect “all day presentations, demos, and workshops from the best damn iOS developers in Colorado.”
UIKonf: May 14–17, 2017 -- Billed as “Berlin’s independent conference for serious iOS developers,” UIKonf is still lining up speakers but currently promises developer Cate Huston of Automatic, typographer and developer Frank Rausch, and author Rob Napier.
Registration costs €529 (US$565) and includes free social events on the first day of the conference, but the organizers are encouraging charity donations for the social events.
ACEs Conference: May 31–June 1, 2017 -- Organized by Apple consultant Justin Esgar, the Phoenix-based ACEs Conference is in its third year and promises to be “the place for inspiration, ideas, business networking, and instantly-applicable knowledge.” Focusing on ways that Apple consultants can grow their IT businesses, topics will include brand coaching, business workshops, and even meditation for dealing with high-stress situations the job entails. It’s scheduled for May 31st and June 1st at the Sheraton Grand Phoenix.
This year’s keynote will be delivered by business author and entrepreneur Mike Michalowicz. Other speakers include well-known names from the Apple IT and enterprise communities, like our own Adam Engst (who will be talking about content marketing based on his experience with the TidBITS Content Network), Marcy Maslove of Empowerment Unlimited Coaching, Alex Narvey of Precursor Canada, and Harold Mann of Mann Consulting.
Early bird pricing of $524 ends 31 March 2017, after which the registration price is $699. The price includes breakfast and lunch both days, and dinner one of the nights. Save 10 percent by using coupon code TIDBITS. You can also buy one-on-one consulting sessions with Michalowicz for $500 or with Jennifer Dawn of Jennifer Dawn Coaching for $350. You can also sign up for Proactive Support professional certification for $250.
MacDevOps:YVR: June 5–6, 2017 -- MacDevOps:YVR will take place June 5th and 6th in Vancouver, Canada on the campus of Simon Fraser University. It focuses on open source projects built by members of the Mac enterprise community, such as Munki, created by Greg Neagle of Disney Animation and now the most popular app for distributing Mac software in the large organizations. If you code as part of managing Apple devices, check out this conference.
Topics covered at MacDevOps:YVR include open source projects like Munki, Santa, osquery, Zentral, and more; code sharing with GitHub, GitLab, and other source control systems; security; the future of Apple IT; and the role of MDM for Macs in the future. Speakers include security researcher Sarah Lewis, Mike Lynn of Dropbox, and Joel Rennich of Trusource Labs Enterprise Services. For more details, listen to a podcast with Mat X, the conference organizer. Early bird registration costs CAD$265 (US$200) until 31 March 2017, after which it increases to CAD$465 (US$345).
WWDC: June 5–9, 2017 -- Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference will take place at the McEnery Convention Center in San Jose, CA June 5th through 9th (see “WWDC 2017 Moves Back to San Jose on June 5th through 9th,” 16 February 2017).
Registration opened 27 March 2017 at 10:00 AM PDT. As in previous years, tickets will be distributed by lottery to registered developers who wish to attend. Tickets cost $1599, but Apple offers scholarships for students that include lodging.
A number of other events will be taking place alongside WWDC. Jim Dalrymple’s Beard Bash will offer free music and beer on 5 June 2017 at the City National Civic. John Gruber will be hosting a live recording of his podcast, The Talk Show, on 6 June 2017 at the California Theater. James Dempsey and the Breakpoints will be performing the night of 7 June 2017 at the City National Civic, with proceeds to benefit App Camp for Girls.
If you can’t score a WWDC ticket, there are three adjoining conferences: AltConf, CocoaConf Next Door, and Layers.
AltConf: June 5–8 2017 -- AltConf is a free, community-driven event that takes place alongside WWDC, offering additional talks and events for those who weren’t lucky enough to get into WWDC or who want a break from the Apple Reality Distortion Field. While tickets are free, you can buy a “hero ticket” for $300 that guarantees entry. A few of the speakers this year include Virginia Roberts, Greg Heo, Daniel Steinberg, Alicia Carr, and James Dempsey.
AltConf and Layers are also hosting an exclusive pre-release screening of the documentary “App: The Human Story” on 4 June 2017 at 5 PM at the Hammer Theatre Center in San Jose. Tickets cost $25 with all proceeds being donated to App Camp for Girls. Following the screening, a panel made up of cast members from the film, including a number of well-known names in the Apple development world, will discuss the movie.
CocoaConf Next Door: June 5–8 2017 -- Taking place alongside WWDC — literally next door — CocoaConf Next Door is a four-day developer conference covering all things Swift, iOS and macOS. Early bird registration is $999 until 28 April 2017, when the full schedule is expected to be announced. Confirmed speakers are Jean MacDonald of App Camp for Girls, author Daniel Steinberg, author Rob Napier, and Khan Academy developer Laura Savino.
Layers: June 5–7 2017 -- A conference for designers, Layers is described as “like a party, but for learning.” This three-day conference will take place at the Montgomery Theater, across from WWDC. Details have yet to be announced, but tickets cost $850 each.
MacDeployment: June 8–9 2017 -- A two-day conference starting on June 8th at the University of Calgary in Canada, MacDeployment is dedicated to the best practices in Mac deployment and maintenance. Early bird registration costs $179 through 23 May 2017, after which it goes up to $249.
X World: June 29–30, 2017 -- For those who manage Mac and iOS installations in a support, lab manager, network technician, or systems administrator role, the Australian Apple University Consortium puts on the X World conference. Session and registration information are not yet available, but the conference will take place at the University of Technology Sydney.
MacAdmins: July 11–14, 2017 -- Hosted at the Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel in State College, PA, the MacAdmins conference offers over 50 technical sessions on Mac and iOS deployment plus networking opportunities for over 400 Apple-focused admins. Details about sessions and speakers for 2017 are not yet set, but registration opens 28 March 2017 and will cost $599 for early-bird registration, going up to $799 on 17 May 2017. Registration includes workshops, breakout sessions, networking events, and breakfast, lunch, and dinner throughout the event. Rooms at recommended hotels can be found for around $100 per night
Macstock Conference & Expo: July 15–16, 2017 -- Returning for its third year, Macstock 2017 will be held July 15th and 16th at the Luecht Conference Center in Crystal Lake, IL. The $199 premium ticket admission to all speaker and roundtable sessions, lunch, dinner, breakfast, a T-shirt, the new Macstock Swap Trading Zone, admission to Barry’s Midwest Mac Mingle After Party, and a complimentary pint glass. If you don’t want to go to the after-party or need a pint glass, you can get a $169 standard ticket, and if you have only one day to attend, an $89 single-day ticket gives you a choice Saturday or Sunday.
Speakers will include Chuck Joiner of MacVoices, developer Brett Terpstra, and Allison Sheridan of Nosillacast, among a variety of other well-known members of the Apple media and user group world. Refreshingly, Macstock is aimed at Apple enthusiasts of all experience levels, making it one of the few conferences that’s open to the everyday Apple user who just wants to learn more and hobnob with like-minded people. Sessions are identified as being appropriate for beginners or intermediate users.
FileMaker Developer Conference: July 24–27, 2017 -- This one’s pretty specific, but since the FileMaker Developer Conference is open to the public and FileMaker is an Apple subsidiary, we’re including it. It takes place from July 24th through 27th at the JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge in Phoenix. Early bird registration is $999 until 28 April 2017 after which it goes up by $100.
Apple Market Forum: August 2017 -- Organized by Macworld/iWorld veteran Paul Kent and the Mac Observer co-founder Dave Hamilton, Apple Market Forum will offer “2 days of analysis, vision and insights into the dynamics, tools and technology that are defining the Apple Marketplace.” Details are sparse, but the AMF will have room for only 350 attendees so you’ll want sign up on the priority registration list to stay in the loop.
iOSDevCampDC: August 4, 2017 -- iOSDevCampDC is a one-day “unconference” for iOS developers that will take place in McLean, VA. Stay tuned for additional details.
CMD-D: August 9, 2017 -- The new CMD-D conference, held in Santa Clara, California on August 9th and organized by automation guru Sal Soghoian, will focus on all things related to scripting and automation. Speakers include Soghoian, Andy Ihnatko, John Welch, Jon Pugh, and Jason Snell, and the schedule is jam-packed from 9 AM to 10 PM. Tickets cost $295 for early bird pricing through June 15th, and will increase to $395 afterward. An identically priced Scripting Boot Camp will take place the day before, on August 8th — details about what will be covered that day are still being finalized. See “New CMD-D Conference Targets Automation” (16 May 2017) for more details.
360|iDev: August 13–16, 2017 -- Claiming to be “the Leading indie iOS/Mac (and watchOS, and tvOS) developer conference,” 360|iDev is scheduled for August 13th through 16th at the Grand Hyatt Denver in Denver. Registration is $799 for indie developers and $1049 for enterprise developers. The fee includes hands-on pre-conference training, lunch every day, and receptions on the first two days. Speaker and session details aren’t yet available.
Indie DevStock: September 2017 -- A conference for developers at the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center in Nashville, Indie DevStock is organized by women and will probably take place in September. No details are yet available. Sign up for their mailing list to be notified when tickets go on sale.
try! Swift: September and November 2017 -- While the Tokyo instantiation of this conference is already over, try! Swift is returning to New York City in September and expanding to Bangalore in November. Details have yet to be announced, but try! Swift is described as “an immersive community gathering about Swift Language Best Practices, Application Development in Swift, Server-Side Swift, Open Source Swift, and the Swift Community.” You can sign up to receive more information.
MacSysAdmin: October 3-6, 2017 -- The premier event for Mac and iOS system administrators in Europe, MacSysAdmin will take place October 3rd through 6th in Göteborg, Sweden. Talks are aimed at system administrators in enterprises, schools, and institutions, along with technical consultants, consulting firms, and distributors. Details for the 2017 event aren’t yet available, but past speakers include “[Take Control of OS X Server]” author Charles Edge, Arek Dreyer, Andrina Kelly, Ed Marczak, Greg Neagle, and other well-known names in the Apple sysadmin world.
iOSDevUK: September 4–7, 2017 -- Focused on iOS development topics, the seventh installment of iOSDevUK will take place from September 4th through 7th. No other details are forthcoming, although the organizers say that tickets will go on sale before Easter.
iBooks Author Conference: October 12–13, 2017 -- A gathering of the iBooks Author user community at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, the iBooks Author Conference focuses on educators, entrepreneurs, trainers, and authors. The main conference will be on October 12th and 13th. Early bird admission is $560 through 1 April 2017 with the price jumping by $70 after that.
The keynote speaker will be Scott Bolton, a NASA astrophysicist and author of “Destination: Jupiter.” Other speakers will include the Apple Distinguished Educator Jason LaMar, Denise Clifton of Tandemvines Publishing, and author Luke Asa Guidici.
Release Notes: October 16–18, 2017 -- While many conferences aimed at Mac and iOS developers have some sessions that cover business issues, the Release Notes conference aims squarely at that topic, building in plenty of time for essential networking. Scheduled for October 16th through 18th in Chicago. Details about speakers, sessions, and registration prices aren’t yet available, but you can sign up to be alerted when they’re decided upon. Last year’s speakers included Christina Warren of Gizmodo, David Sparks of MacSparky, Stephen Hackett of Relay FM, Jaimee Newberry of MartianCraft, and Rich Siegel of Bare Bones Software.
MacTrack Legal: October 19–21, 2017 -- If you’re a Mac-using lawyer, check out the MacTrack Legal conference, held at Disney World in Orlando, FL. Speakers will include Katie Floyd, an attorney who co-hosts the Mac Power Users podcast with David Sparks of MacSparky, Randy Juip, and Tom Lambotte. Sessions will cover document workflow, communicating via video, GTD productivity, automated marketing systems, best practices in case management, and intermediate to advanced PDF work.
The conference hotel is within walking distance of Disney’s Epcot, and the conference will overlap with the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival for anyone who wants to venture out of the conference or bring a spouse looking for something else to do. Early bird tickets cost $725 through 1 May 2017, with general admission after that priced at $825 and last-minute registration at $925. You can save $50 by using the coupon code TIDBITS.
Jamf Nation User Conference: October 24–26, 2017 -- Much of being an Apple IT administrator these days involves device management. Jamf, one of the leading suppliers of device management systems with Jamf Pro (previously known as Casper) and Jamf Now (previously called Bushel), puts on the Jamf Nation User Conference (JNUC) with the purpose of “empowering people, transforming business processes and making IT life easier.”
Held in downtown Minneapolis, the JNUC provides product demo and preview sessions, in-depth tech sessions, sessions dedicated to Apple services, and certification courses. Registration fees range from $499 to $1099, depending on when you sign up and if you’re in the education market.
MacTech Conference: November 15–17, 2017 -- While the MacTech Pro events fit into a single day and travel around the country, the Los Angeles-based MacTech Conference offers attendees three days of sessions, seminars, and vendor interaction, plus pre-conference workshops and a pair of superlative evening activities. We’ve attended a number of times (see “MacTech Conference 2012 Opens Mental Doors,” 22 October 2012, “MacTech Conference 2013 Abounds with Networking and Fun,” 11 November 2013, and “Three Highlights from MacTech Conference 2015,” 9 November 2015) and recommend it to Apple IT professionals. It’s too early for there to be a list of speakers or sessions, but now is a good time to pencil MacTech Conference onto your calendar for November 15th through 17th, with pre-conference workshops on the 14th. Early bird tickets currently cost $949; the price will rise to $1599 eventually.
Others? -- If we’ve missed any notable Apple-focused conferences that are open to the public and attract attendees from a broad geographic area, please let us know in the comments, and we’ll look into adding them. We do know that NSNorth is taking a year off, but may return in the future.
A number of conferences from last year are either not returning in 2017 or say nothing online about their 2017 plans. If you know more about what’s happening with one of these conferences, tell us, and we’ll update the article appropriately.