App Store hands-on, notable apps

The App Store is live, and we're taking a peek around before it implodes from curious users trying to download dozens of apps for their iPhones and iPods touch (or is that iPod touches?).

Already users can start downloading their programs (which are downloaded to their /Users/[user]/Music/iTunes/Mobile Applications/ directory as .ipa files), but you can't do anything with them until you get the 2.0 firmware (or an iPhone 3G).

So far everything is really smooth and easy to use, although it's easy to tell that the enormous amount of applications that will be available in the coming months (and years) will become a difficult thing to trudge through. It's a high-class problem for Apple, but hopefully it won't be too overwhelming to find something good if you don't know exactly what you're looking for.

We'll be keeping tally of some of the more noteworthy launch apps, although many we've already seen, and we're updating as we go. Take a look at a few after the break!

AIM -- We're excited about this, though the fact you can't turn off the sounds, coupled with the non-live message reception puts a little damper on the proceedings. We're hoping this gets a bit more exciting when Apple's push servers come online.

Google Mobile -- "a great place to start your search"

Twitterrific -- Finally, a legit, standalone Twitter client. We're finding it to be quite buggy and slow, however -- which seems to be a growing trend with apps we're testing out.

Bomberman Touch -- We love Bomberman, and we'll take him in any form we can get him.

Epocrates Rx
-- An app to help identify "mystery pills" you might find. Very helpful, except that you've got to create an account to use the software, which is quite annoying.

NY Times
-- We want to like this, but it seems a bit top heavy. Loading up the front page took longer than it should have over WiFi. We could see this being a useful source of news if you've got the patience for it. A dedicated RSS reader will probably get you further though.

NYC Subways -- This is a great idea, unfortunately it only provides scrollable images -- no zooming or deeper info. We'd like to see an update to this ASAP. Still, it's nice if you need to take a quick look for a train. There are quite a few options on the store for apps of this nature -- CityTransit and the more expensive iTrans NYC both look like viable options.