While this week, most focus has been placed on CES 2011, which I’ll be looking at an overview of later; there’s been a lot of attention given to the ever show-stealing Apple.
This week, the long awaited App store for Mac has been launched, signaling the beginning of the end for software CD’s. Sure Microsoft already had an app store before with its Windows Marketplace, which quietly disappeared but there are a number of reasons why the Mac version will carry on.
The new application finally ties together all the Apple ranges to the App store allowing for more overall productivity and easier access to many software programs for desktops and laptops, making combing the shelves of PC world for some elusive software a thing of the past, sort of.
At its launch, the Mac App Store has only about 1,000 apps. This isn’t bad, but is really rather limiting when compared to the huge app store available to the iPhone and iPad.
I was surprised to see such a light application open, it looks like Apple have kept the overall look and feel of the portable app store, rather than going for a widely expected iTunes update.
This however makes a lot of sense, the Mac Store acts in pretty much exactly the same way that it’s counterparts do, applications are downloaded straight to your apps folder and ready for use. When you go to download an app, you’re no longer asked for your iTunes password etc. every time and there’s a neat little graphic as the application icon pops to life and swoops down into your dock!
While it’s still bare and early days the app store has lots of potential. While the initial download of the OS X patch might be big, the software is light enough to be downloaded even on the slower rural connections.
The potential with the Mac App store is huge, as we’ve seen already on the iPhone, iPad and Android platforms; apps work. Easy to download and much more convenient than rummaging through shelves in your local computer store! The benefit, which the desktop-based store has over its counterparts, is the relative size of programs. Unhindered by slow and expensive 3G connections and with a lot more hard drive space, the Mac app store allows for whole suites to be downloaded.
Leading nicely on to the biggest plus point which the Mac App Store has; piracy. People may download programs illegally because they’re hard to find or very expensive. Well the store goes some way to helping remedy that. By making programs easy to find as the store grows, it should in theory help cut down some piracy. It’s often been shown that sometimes convenience just wins out. As for price, well that’s down to the producer but with free alternatives it might just prove to be something which could seriously tackle software piracy in the long run.
Also in the coming week or so, I’ll be looking at some of the products coming out of CES 2011. There’s a lot of tablets to go through, which means at the end of the year I’ll be looking back at how 90% never made it through the 12 months, and the ones that did were flattened by the launch of the iPad 2.
Also another footnote, this blog can now be accessed through www.coconut.ie Some big thanks to people who organised that and there’s be plenty more updates coming! Along with a nice redesign.