Mac App Store now live. Check out more than 1,000 apps

Posted by Raven Lovecraft

Apple's much talked about digital software store for the Mac operating system is now a thing of reality. Launching alongside the streamlined service is more than 1,000 apps, with a wide selection of both free and premium content.

Mac owners will be able to sort through a centralized location for software from all sorts of publishers, and will have the option to browse through categories such as Graphics & Design, Utilities, Productivity, Lifestyle, and Education.

The new digital download storefront will be available in more than 90 countries on day one, though it's unknown exactly how many apps will be available or how many big-name software companies have signed on. After all, Apple gets a cut of every app sold on the store, but is it more or less than the cut taken by retailers and other third-party online marketplaces?

There's a much bigger world out there for the distribution of computer software, so the fate of the Mac App Store is not a guaranteed positive. Nevertheless, users will no doubt find convenience in having an outlet for downloadable content they know has been vetted and approved by Apple.

"With more than 1,000 apps, the Mac App Store is off to a great start. With more than 1,000 apps, the Mac App Store is off to a great start," said Steve Jobs in a press release.The Mac App Store was first announced in October, and at the time was promised to launch within 90 days. A January 6 release date will just barely make that cutoff point.

The launch of the new storefront also kills the current Apple.com store that allowed downloads of Mac software. Any publisher or developer that had programs available for sale there has to re-apply to have them available on the newly launched platform.