Amazon squares up to Apple again with Mac Download Store

Amazon has launched a Mac-only section of its app store, in competition with Apple’s five-month-old Mac App Store.

Despite its claims in court that the term ‘app store’ is generic, the company has played it safe and called the store Mac Software Downloads. It’s currently offering around 250 titles – including some that Apple rejects.

These include Microsoft’s Office for Mac, Quickbooks and Roxio’s Toast, as well as products from Adobe.

The web-based store is also available to users running slightly older versions of the Mac OS than is Apple’s; it supports Mac OS X 10.5, also known as Leopard, and above.

It is split into two sections, productivity and games, with around 50 offerings under the latter heading.

Like Apple’s Mac App Store, Amazon allows users to download apps for a second time if necessary. However, there’s no update mechanism for downloaded apps, as there is with the Apple store.

The store is already open for business in the US. To promote the launch, Amazon’s offering a $5 discount on any purchase until 1 June using the code ‘SAVE5MAC’ at checkout.