updated 10:50 am EDT, Mon March 28, 2011
Independent Mac apps sidelined
The 2011 Apple Design Awards -- scheduled to take place during this year's WWDC in San Francisco -- will be limited exclusively to titles available via the Mac or iOS App Stores, according to a section on the awards website. Apps must also be put on sale by May 23rd in order to qualify.
The publishing restrictions could come as a blow to Mac developers. While Mac software is once again eligible at the ADAs, having been excluded last year, developers choosing not to publish through the Mac App Store are being denied the prizes and publicity the awards can offer. Apple claims a 30 percent cut of any revenue an app generates at the App Store.
The company may also have taken to using the ADAs to promote whatever it considers most important in a given year. The exclusion of Mac titles in 2010 was acknowledged by Apple as a way of promoting iPhone and iPad apps, particularly as the first-generation iPad had only debuted in April. The Mac App Store launched at the beginning of 2011, and Apple is likely keen to promote it along with the adoption of the upcoming Mac OS X Lion.