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Apple’s Mac App Store gets a complete makeover

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The Mac App Store is getting a major facelift, Apple announced at WWDC on Monday.

In its new macOS, Mojave, the App store will become more robust in a few different ways. 

First, it will straight up offer more apps — even Microsoft’s Office 365. WHOA. Apple also spotlighted the arrival of Adobe and several gaming apps.

Apple has additionally re-organized the Mac App Store with a series of tabs, while still maintaining categories — that will group apps around Create, Work, Play, and Develop tabs.

It will also feature a new and improved Discover tab. That section will pull in “editorial content” about different apps and autoplay videos featuring information about the apps, kind of like mini-trailers.

Putting the app in Apple. (Sorry.)

Putting the app in Apple. (Sorry.)

The way that the App store will present apps is also changing, too. It will particularly spotlight apps’ user ratings, as well as whether the app is charting, and if it is an “Editors’ Choice.”

But the redesign doesn’t mean apps will totally dominate the Mac experience, as they do on iPhone. The ability to download directly (outside of the App Store) doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere. However, the redesign of Mac’s App Store does mean that Apple will have more opportunities to get that sweet 30 percent cut of purchases.

Prior to WWDC, rumors surfaced that Apple was trying to make it easier to design apps for both OS and iOS. Dubbed “Project Marzipan,” the initiative would mean that developers wouldn’t have to create separate apps for these two operating systems. 

Mac App Store ch-ch-ch-ch-changes.

Mac App Store ch-ch-ch-ch-changes.

This App Store redesign isn’t quite that. Earlier in the presentation, Apple Software Engineering SVP Craig Federighi announced that several iOS apps, including News, Stocks, Home, and Voice Memos, would be adapted from iOS to macOS.  

But after the App Store announcements, Federighi also made a point to say that macOS and iOS will remain distinct entities — despite more potential app overlaps. He even put the rumor to rest with a giant, screen-shaking “No.”

Still, increased investment in Mac’s App Store could signal a push toward a more unified development process, despite the distinct ecosystems. An Apple fan can dream.

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