Well it is officially open. Just to test it out I decided to pick up the first paid Cydia App: Cyntact. The first thing you will notice after installing the new Cydia is Cyntact up there in changes. You'll also notice that the title and description is in the color blue instead of black like normal applications. This blue color indicated that it is a Cydia Store Application. That is the only difference you will see in the new Cydia as nothing else menu-wise has changed.
On to the buying. This process took me ages here the first time around. First I had to sign in with my google account, go through some steps to link the account, etc. Next was signing in with my amazon.com account and going through all the various steps (including remembering my password ) to buy the app. Finally I had purchased the app and was able to install it.
All said in done the entire process took me about 10 mins including one password lookup in the keychain on my computer. I noticed while authorizing Cydia on my google account there was a button to remember Cydia for later use with my google account so I hopefully wont have to go through all those hoops again. I also noticed a similar option when finally paying with amazon.com to keep my information on file. Something to note is the fact that amazon.com is the only current payment option so users without a US address can not purchase from the Cydia Store right now. If you can get an amazon account you can purchase from the Cydia Store. When questioned about paypal Saurik said, "I am going to work on PayPal support for next week. (I did Amazon first as PayPal has a worse experience and is more expensive)."
I can not say for sure whether or not the process is as streamlined as it should be or not. The first purchase takes a long time. Is all my information saved for future purchases? I guess I'll have to wait until I buy a second app from the Cydia Store. Assuming it doesn't require me to login a couple times etc then the Cydia Store looks like it could be a big win in convenience for the end user when purchasing jailbreak apps.
The changes I'm really looking forward to in Cydia is the Comments and rating systems that Saurik has not yet implemented "Comments and ratings will be out soon: I just want to think through scalability one more time (I don't want it to kill payments ;P)." For now business as usual on the enduser side of things. Cydia is Cydia. The store probably won't effect those who aren't interested in it.
Want to see the whole step-by-step process of purchasing in Cydia? Slideshow below.
edit: some more info
- Saurik is looking into doing direct credit card processing in the future.
- The purchase is tied to your Cydia account. If you get a new iPhone your purchase will still be valid.
- Saurik does not plan on charging for applications like Cyntact in the future.
- Cyntact does not have any DRM. Saurik is working with current commercial applications to handle whatever DRM they may have.
- If you've had a failed payment (such as, a credit card decline) you will need to be patient since Saurik has not coded in support for that yet.