Amazon launches Mac software and game download store


Please note: the Mac App Store isn’t the only game in town. Amazon quietly unveiled its Mac software downloads on Thursday, a selection of around 250 Mac apps and games that you can buy and install without ever having to open a box. While Amazon has been selling downloadable Mac software for a while, bundling them into one section is new. The Internet retailer is also offering a $ 5 coupon to celebrate the “launch” of its Mac download store.

“The Mac Download Store is a one-stop-shop where customers can get the most popular Mac games and software from Call of Duty to Microsoft Office,” said an Amazon PR representative. Macmonde. “Amazon will continue to create the widest selection of titles in these categories over the coming months. Amazon’s Mac download store offers a no-install download process where the customer only gets the product without any unwanted extras, which makes shopping faster and easier. Plus, downloads are conveniently saved to your games and software library where you can download unlimited times for personal use.

The Amazon representative said that as a launch promotion, the company is offering customers free downloads of the Airport Mania: First Flight game as well as a $ 5 discount on their first download for the first week for all games and software with code SAVE5MAC.

While the titles available include top software like Microsoft Office and Intuit’s QuickBooks, as well as popular games like Call of Duty 4 and Dragon Age 2, there is a dearth of products in the independent software market. There doesn’t seem to be a substantial discount on electronic versions either: a downloadable version of Microsoft Office for Mac 2011 Home and Student Edition Family Pack costs $ 115, up from a version that ships at $ 117 (shipping not included). And while Dragon Age 2 will set you back $ 60 to download, a boxed DVD costs $ 42, and it’s eligible for free shipping. Some titles seem about the same price on the Amazon store and the Mac App Store: the Borderlands Game of the Year edition, for example, costs $ 49.99 on the Mac App Store and $ 49.95 on Amazon. .

Once you have purchased an app or game, you can re-download it as many times as you want. However, Amazon cautions, different manufacturers may have different restrictions on the number of machines you can install software on with a single license key. For games, Amazon says it will allow you to request an additional product key at no additional cost if you run out of installations on the key you purchased, although it also says those installations are “for personal use. only ”and not for friends and family.

To download an app, Amazon relies on its own game / software downloader, which it says will launch automatically for Mac users when they download their first app. When it comes to updates, expect a process that isn’t as smooth as the Mac App Store. While some programs may ask you for updates and fixes themselves, Amazon says that for others, you may need to visit the manufacturer’s site. And while trial versions are available for PC downloads, this feature has yet to make its way to the Mac.

Software purchased from Amazon Mac Software Downloads requires Mac OS X 10.5 or later.

[Updated on 5/26 at 12:53 p.m. to clarify the store and add information about the discount offer. Updated at 2:34 p.m. to add comment from Amazon PR.]


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