Touch ID in the Mac App Store

Thanks to Touch ID on the MacBook Pro, you can use your fingerprint to make Mac App Store purchases and access content requiring your Apple ID password. Not only does it make it easier to quickly download apps and games you want, but it also means you can create a long, complex Apple ID password without worrying about how often you'll have to enter it.

We, naturally, have an inclination to make life easier for ourselves. When it comes to passwords we know we'll be using regularly, it might be tempting to create something simple, easy to remember, and short. We know it's a bad idea, but sometimes, we do things we know are bad if it makes our lives a little easier.

Now that the MacBook Pro has Touch ID, I've created an ultra complex, long, and strong password to keep my Apple ID safe. With the Touch Bar and Touch ID, you can use your fingerprint instead of typing in that strong, annoying password.

How to search for content in the Mac App Store with the Touch Bar

When you open the Mac App Store, the first thing you will see on the Touch Bar is a list of categories. With just a tap, you can switch between Featured, Top Charts, Categories, Purchased, and Updates. Tap a tab to switch to the selected window in the Mac App Store.

If you want to search for a specific title, tap the Search icon, which looks like a magnifying glass. Your cursor will automatically jump to the search bar in the Mac App Store window.

In macOS Mojave's current developer beta, there is no method for searching for content in the Mac App Store, nor is there a list of categories. This may change before the final build of Mojave, but for now, the Touch Bar is pretty much useless in the Mac App Store, though Touch ID is still the best way to make purchases.

Apple occasionally offers updates to iOS, watchOS, tvOS, and macOS as closed developer previews or public betas for iPhone, iPad, Apple TV and Mac (sadly, no public beta for the Apple Watch). While the betas contain new features, they also contain pre-release bugs that can prevent the normal use of your iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Apple TV, or Mac, and are not intended for everyday use on a primary device. That's why we strongly recommend staying away from developer previews unless you need them for software development, and using the public betas with caution. If you depend on your devices, wait for the final release.

How to use Touch ID to make Mac App Store purchases

Touch ID request for purchasing an app in the Mac App Store

There isn't much to what the Touch Bar does in the Mac App Store, but Touch ID is where the MacBook Pro shines. You can make purchases, check your account settings, and more with just the touch of your finger.

Make sure you've registered your fingerprint with Touch ID before trying to use the feature in the Mac App Store.

  1. Launch the Mac App Store.
  2. Select a Mac app that you haven't already previously downloaded.
  3. Click Buy.
  4. Enter your Apple ID password when prompted.
  5. Click Yes when asked if you want to use Touch ID for future purchases.

From now on, you will be able to use Touch ID to make purchases in the Mac App Store instead of having to enter your Apple ID password every time.

Note: Just like using Touch ID on the iPhone, sometimes you'll have to manually enter your Apple ID password, so make sure you have a copy of it written down somewhere, or you have it stored in a password manager.

If, for some reason, Touch ID isn't working for you in the Mac App Store, check out our troubleshooting guide.

How to customize the Touch Bar for the Mac App Store

Unfortunately, you can't. Here is one of those times when I wish Apple would have put a little more effort into designing the Touch Bar for an app. There are a couple of cool sub-menus that Apple could have included that would make using the Touch bar special.

For example, when viewing an app's summary page, I'd love to see a secondary Touch Bar list of tools like copying the app link, sharing it on Twitter and Facebook, and telling a friend.

When in the Updates tab, it would be cool if there were a tool right on the Touch Bar to let me "Update All" with just a tap.

Apple always has the ability to update the tools and options for the Touch Bar, and this is one place I hope it does.

Any questions?

Do you have any questions about using the Touch Bar or Touch ID in the Mac App Store? Put them in the comments and we'll help you out!

Updated August 2018: Added information about how the Touch Bar works in macOS Mojave (beta).

MacBook Pro

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