The App Store revolutionized mobile apps. We hope to do the same for PC apps with the Mac App Store by making finding and buying PC apps easy and fun. We can’t wait to get started on January 6
– Steve Jobs, Apple CEO.
Like the existing App store for the iPhone and iPod touch, the Mac App Store will feature paid and free apps in several categories including Education, Games, Graphics & Design, Lifestyle, Productivity and Utilities.
Consumers can buy, download and install apps in just one click and start using them immediately on their Mac OS X Snow Leopard based computers.
Apple plans to make Mac App Store available in 90 countries at launch.
But the $64,000 question is: will the Mac App store be anywhere near as popular as Apple’s Mobile App Store with consumers and developers?
We don’t think so.
In our not-so-humble view, the Mac App Store won’t fly, or at least won’t get anywhere remotely near the traction the App Store for iPhone/iPod touch has received in a short time because of heightened interest from both consumers and app developers.
The simple reason boils down to price.
The iPod touch or iPhone cost just a few hundred dollars and fueled their rapid growth unlike the far more expensive Mac computers that languish in the shadow of Microsoft’s ubiquitous low-priced Windows computers.
For instance, a decently configured MacBook Pro laptop with 4GB RAM, 500GB HD, iWorks and Office Mac Home & Business Edition costs $1,600.00 before tax.
You can get a similarly configured Dell notebook with Windows for less than half the price of the MacBook Pro.
So, is it any surprise the user-base of Macs is less than 10% of total PC users.
Given the high price-points of Mac products and the significant lower cost of Windows-based systems, we don’t see the MacBook Pro or any of its Mac siblings making deep inroads into homes or offices any time soon the way the wildly successful iPhone or iPod touch have done.
If total consumer interest in the Mac is not high, it’s unlikely developers will be motivated to continue work on the Mac platform for long.
At best, we see the Mac App Store engendering further loyalty to Apple among the faithful and serving as a marketing opportunity for the company to raise the brand-awareness of the Mac.