This is no secret, but developers will have to play by Apple’s rules if they want their Apps to live on the Mac App Store in the future. Apple notes that developers should only submit finished products to the store, and that demos or trials of any kind should instead be made available on developers’ Web sites. This may also apply to “lite” editions of Apps.
Or, in Apple’s own words:
Your website is the best place to provide demos, trial versions, or betas of your software for customers to explore. The apps you submit to be reviewed for the Mac App Store should be fully functional, retail versions of your app.
While that does signify a change in the way Apple’s App Store works—clearly the App Store is filled with all sorts of “lite” iPhone software—it may make a little bit of sense when you consider the Mac App Store is dealing with desktop software. You may be willing to put up with a trial version of an iPhone App because, well, it’s “just” an iPhone App, but perhaps Apple doesn’t want the perception to be out there that Mac OS X software is nothing but half-finished demoware and whatnot?
But it does speak to what I alluded to some weeks ago (now featured in a Yale class!), that an Apple-controlled Mac App Store will very much change people’s perception of what Mac OS X software can, and should, be.
I leave it up to you if that’s a or bad thing.
It may also mean that the Mac App Store will be less about free-wheeling exploration of software and more about the simplified delivery of software.
It’s sort of the opposite of what you find on so many e-book stores these days. Many books have at least a chapter available for free to see whether you like it or not.
But, this is Apple’s store, and it can do what it likes. Such is the life of a closed platform.