Install and Use the Mac App Store

April 27, 2011, By Christian Cawley

The world is changing.

Just 12 months ago, the only place you would have found an app store would be on a mobile phone, iPad or in Linux Ubuntu. Allowing easy access to applications that can be quickly and easily downloaded and installed, app stores are used to bulk up the basic application count on a new device (or Ubuntu PC) with useful applications and utilities for little or no cost.

Following the success of the Apple app store for iOS devices (and taking another leaf out of Linux’s book), Apple have introduced the Mac App Store, designed for Mac OS X 10.6 and later users to quickly find and download apps, for free or for a fee.

Rather than spend time browsing the web for software, finding out whether or not it can be downloaded and then making arrangements for purchase, Apple have placed pretty much any app that might be needed in their App Store.

Install and use the Mac App Store

Installing the Mac OS App Store

To get started installing the App Store, go to the main menu and select Software Update… to get  your Apple up to date with the latest updates from Apple.

Once updated, you should see the App Store added to the dock, which you will be able to click to launch the online application market.

Now it is time to have a browse through what is available, and it might be fair enough to suggest at this moment that you will either be amazed or quite underwhelmed.

It should be easy to distinguish which sensation you experience based on the following:

  • Underwhelmed: you own an iPhone
  • Amazed: you last bought software in 2005, and it cost you $49

Having the App Store on your Mac offers an amazing opportunity to find interesting software applications and easy to play games, with titles as different as Angry Birds and Garageband.

Finding and Buying Apps

The first thing you will need to do in order to purchase an app is sign in, via Store > Sign In… using your usual Apple ID.

If you would rather use a different, separate account, select Create Account.  It is then time to start looking through the App Store in depth. Click Top Charts across the top of the App Store window to see the most popular apps, or select Categories to find apps grouped by type. The search tool in the top right can also be employed.

To download an app, choose the app that you want and select the Buy or Free button underneath, depending on whether or not the app is paid or free. Most apps download pretty quickly, and within a few moments you should find that it is installed on your Mac and added to the dock, ready for you to use!

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