Mac App Store LIVE!Hold on to your wallet! This week Apple launched their long-awaited Mac App Store with a mix of thousands of paid and free applications.

The Mac App Store is basically just a desktop version of their hugely successful iOS store that Apple users have been enjoying for quite some time. The Mac App Store sorts apps in easy to browse and search categories like games, graphics, productivity, education, lifestyle and utilities as well as popular lists including new releases, most downloaded and staff favorites among others.

Purchasing and installing apps from the Mac App Store is as easy as it is on the iPhone. Just click on an app, enter your iTunes password and the app(s) will download and install.

Prices range from $2.99 for Angry Birds to $14.99 each for individual iLife programs (iPhoto, iMovie and GarageBand). More sophisticated applications like Aperture 3 will set you back $79.99.

To check out the new Mac App Store yourself, just download the latest Mac OS X update (v10.6.6) from under your Apple menu (Apple > Software Update) or by visiting apple.com/mac/app-store or check out Gizmos For Geeks Mac App Store walk-through. If you’re more interested in making your own apps, then go to developer.apple.com. Apple does a pretty generous split with Developers, so go get rich coding.minted methodshop