Intel's AppUp store smells like netbook bloat - and a cash cow
It's not that I don't understand what Intel is trying to do with AppUp - their angle is pretty clear. There's plenty of potential profit if Intel negotiates distribution deals with OEMs and can get AppUp preinstalled on millions of netbooks.
But what's the big selling point for the consumer?
There are, after all, loads of great sites you can already visit to download freeware and shareware: Filehippo, FreewareFiles, Download.Com, Softpedia, and many others. Unlike plain old download sites, however, AppUp requires you to submit payment information - even if you're only interested in downloading free apps.
Ultimately, it's about brand recognition and convenience. The average Joe doesn't know much about finding safe, useful software online and AppUp will be right there - waiting patiently on netbooks for a user to pull out his or her credit card to pay for a program "tailor-made" for Atom-powered systems.
People have always been willing to pay for trust and convenience, and AppUp is built on that premise. It could well turn into as big a cash cow as the preinstalled McAfee and Norton software users think they need to lock in to for eternity.