Apple sent out an announcement this morning confirming a Mac version of its popular App Store for a January 6, 2011 release. The Mac App Store will offer an iTunes-like experience for finding apps that run on Apple computers running Mac OS X Snow Leopard, the latest version of Apple’s desktop operating system.
There are two major converging trends behind what is a story of convergence on many more levels than that: first, increasing access to the web, and increasing broadband speeds in particular, mean that downloading software is more possible than ever before and faster too. But it’s also in companies’ interests too: a download is always the latest version, it saves on expensive shipping and packaging, and it means software registration, giving vital information about users, is easier to enforce.
Similar to the App Store, Mac store will also allow users to browse apps by downloads, staff favorites or what’s hot. Users can also view reviews and ratings about the applications. Apple said that Mac App Store will be available in 90 countries. The paid and free applications would be available under six categories namely, Education, Games, Graphics & Design, Lifestyle, Productivity, and Utilities.
“The App Store revolutionized mobile apps,” Apple CEO Steve Jobs said in a release. “We hope to do the same for PC apps with the Mac App Store by making finding and buying PC apps easy and fun.” In addition, the Mac App Store will offer sections highlighting “new and noteworthy” apps, “hot” apps, staff favorites and will offer search, customer ratings and reviews, again, very much like iTunes does now. It will also offer the same integrated checkout experience, where you can click once to download the app and then begin using it immediately, says Apple.
Both free and paid apps will populate the new App Store, with developers sharing a 30-percent revenue cut with Apple. The mobile iterations of the App Store have proven extremely popular, with several billion apps downloaded since its launch a little over two years ago.