Apple today announced Developer ID, a program that will allow developers who create applications for the Mac platform a way to create apps that can be distributed in means other than the Mac App Store.
GateKeeper was announced with Mac OS X Mountain Lion, and many were worried about OS X becoming a completely closed environment. However, Apple is showing developers that they can still distribute through other means (though they would obviously like them to go through the Mac App Store). However, this will allow for them to register as a developer and ensure that their software is trusted. In other words, it will help protect against viruses and malware and all the other junk that people can infect their computers with.
This is the email that Apple sent out to developers:
The Mac App Store is the safest place for users to get software for their Mac, but we also want to protect users when they download applications from other places. Developer ID is a new way to help prevent users from installing malware on their Mac. Along with Gatekeeper, a new feature in Mountain Lion, signing applications with your Developer ID certificate provides users with the confidence that your application is not known malware and has not been tampered with.
Get your applications ready for Gatekeeper today. It’s easy to get started with Developer ID using the automated certificate request tools in Xcode 4.3 or the Developer Certificate Utility.