Mac App Store to Offer Unbundled iLife and iWork Applications?

Several MacRumors readers have pointed out that Apple's promotional materials for its forthcoming Mac App Store show that the company may be planning to offer applications from its iLife and iWork suites on an individual basis. Supporting that notion is the demo offered by Apple's Craig Federighi during yesterday's media event in which he showed how a user could purchase and install Pages from the Mac App Store.

100725 mac app store ilife iwork

Based on Mac App Store screenshots posted on Apple's pages, it appears that the company is planning to offer portions of its iLife suite (iPhoto, GarageBand, and iMovie) for $14.99 each. It is unclear whether it will also offer iWeb and iDVD, the other two components of the suite that now retails for $49, as standalone purchases.

Apple similarly lists individual components of iWork (Pages, Keynote, and Numbers) for $19.99 each. Interestingly, this would result in a total price of $59.97 for the three applications purchased individually, below Apple's $79 price for the entire suite.

In addition, Steve Jobs noted during the media event that applications purchased through the Mac App Store would be licensed for use on all of a purchaser's personal Macs. This would appear to represent a middle ground between Apple's current single-user software packages, which allow for installation on only one machine at a time, and family packs, which permit installation on up to five computers but for multiple persons in a single household.

Apple already offers its iPad versions of Pages, Keynote and Numbers as standalone purchases on the iOS App Store, priced at $9.99 each with no bundled suite even available. The same may be true for the Mac App Store, as Apple's promotional screenshots offer no indication that iLife and iWork suites will be available for download in bundled form. Presumably Apple will continue to offer the bundled suites on physical media, but it is unclear how long this distribution method will continue to be supported by Apple once the Mac App Store begins to take hold.

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