Apple Expected to Launch Mac OS X Lion through Mac App Store
With the expected release of Mac OS X Lion
this summer, Apple appears to be planning on releasing it through the Mac App Store. This would be a first for the company, and would dramatically reduce manufacturing costs in the process. Apple is not expected to eliminate the disc version altogether, however, as some customers will still require a hardcopy version of the software.
At this year’s World Wide Developers Conference in San Francisco (June 6-10), Apple is expected to expand on its plans for Mac OS X Lion. Developers working on pre-release versions of Lion have been using the Mac App Store to download beta versions of the software for quite some time now. It only makes sense for Apple to continue this trend and release the final version to the public this way as well.
When Apple updated the MacBook Air late last year, Steve Jobs referred to it as the future of computing. If all future MacBook’s take on a similar design, then the SuperDrive that is now standard on all MacBook Pro models, will soon be a thing of the past. Apple appears to be laying the groundwork for this eventuality by releasing Lion through the Mac App Store. As soon as users get accustomed to downloading software instead of buying it on a CD, then Apple will be free to ditch the optical drive once and for all.
The Mac App Store is one of the newest features coming to Mac OS X Lion, however, Apple decided not to withhold it until this summer and released it as part of a free Mac OS X 10.6.6 update instead. The Mac App Store has proven to be quite successful for Apple. They launched the store with about a thousand apps and within 24 hours, users had already downloaded a million applications.
Digital distribution is also in line with Apple’s newfound commitment to the environment
. By eliminating the packaging, Apple can reduce the amount of waste that eventually ends up in landfills. From a purely financial perspective, releasing Lion through the Mac App Store just makes sense. Hopefully, Apple will be able to pass on some of this savings and keep the price of admission low. When Snow Leopard was released, Apple only charged $29 for it. Will Lion come with a similar price tag? More will be revealed in June.