WP App Store, the project aiming to make plugin and theme purchases easy within the WordPress dashboard — and which we previewed a couple of months ago — quietly launched yesterday (complete with slick intro video). Their plugin is downloadable on their website, which once installed will give you a new top-level menu item for browsing commercial themes and plugins recently added to their system.
Seventeen theme and plugin partners are in place at launch, a few more than announced when the original teaser page went up. Brad Touesnard, the developer behind WP App Store, said that a couple of the vendors that originally showed interest haven’t been responsive, while others just aren’t in the store yet. Developers interested in bringing their own theme or plugin products to WP App Store can request an invite.
Touesnard’s certainly not on his own with this project. In addition to the vendors partnering with WP App Store, his advisors include prominent WordPress business owners Adii Pienaar, Carl Hancock, and Jason Cohen.
Above: The WP App Store plugin, active in the dashboard and displaying newly available themes and plugins.
Vendors (still) on board
The following vendors were present at WP App Store’s launch:
- Crowd Favorite
- Digital Telepathy
- Gabfire Themes
- Modern Tribe
- Obox Themes
- Organic Themes
- Wysija Newsletter
- Zen Themes
Right now, as you might expect, the WP App Store lists many more WordPress themes than plugins — sixteen or so pages of the former and only a few pages of the latter. That likely has more to do with the higher ratio of theme businesses to plugin businesses than anything else.
Touesnard said that WordPress.org’s clause restricting storefront plugins will likely keep it from inclusion there, though teased that they “have some pretty clever strategies to distribute the plugin.” We’ll have to wait to hear more about these ideas, but for now you can download their plugin from WPAppStore.com and upload it to your WordPress install.
In answer to a few questions on Hacker News, Touesnard said that the ability to search and review items in the store are high up on the feature list for future versions of the plugin.
What do you think?
Will WP App Store bring a proper theme and plugin shopping experience to the WordPress dashboard? It will be interesting to find out, in time, what kind of penetration WP App Store can achieve. Leave your thoughts in the comments below.