Today, Amazon launched the Mac Download Store. This new venue offers hundreds of software and games for Macs, and this directly challenges Apple’s own Mac store.
Amazon’s offerings undercut Apple’s products with lower prices. A search in the Apple website for Microsoft Office Home & Student 2011 Family Pack will yield a $149.99 price. The same program is being offered on the Amazon page for $115.00 for immediate download. Apple will ship the program to you.
The Amazon page conveniently separates the software and video games. A click on software yields 201 results, and video games will yield 51 results. In offering these products digitally, Amazon removes the often cumbersome physical aspect of software and video game installation, and there are no CDs to keep track of. Additionally, as with everything digital on Amazon, all purchases are backed up on their servers which means they can be downloaded again at no additional cost, should the need arise.
Amazon has a history of combating existing markets. March saw the introduction of Amazon’s Android App Store which has offered discounted games and apps, much to the dismay of the Android Market.
Amazon also faced a lawsuit from Apple earlier this year over the “App Store” moniker. Apple has claimed that it had rights to “App Store” nomenclature, but Amazon countered that it was not doing anything wrong because the name is very generic.
This Mac venture is a bold move on Amazon’s part, and time will tell how Apple will respond. Certainly, the Cupertino Kingdom is thoroughly unenthused about this recent development.