Apple (Malus x domestica Borkh.) is one of the most important fruit crops showing ribonuclease-mediated self-incompatibility, and no self-compatible apple cultivars are known. Twenty-nine S-alleles were identified in apple and many more incompatibility groups are present compared to sweet cherry. Results from a Belgian, English and a Japanese research group are combined and the S-genotypes of the most important world cultivars are collected. Two different allele labelling system are reconciled and detection methods used in case of the specific alleles are shown. Effects of the resistance breeding programmes are discussed; and scientific efforts involving transgenic technology to create self-compatible genotypes are shown. This review covers the most interesting issues regarding self-incompatibility in apple.