With the announcement of the 2012 Worldwide Developer Conference today, Apple also opened its Apple Design Awards nomination page for iOS and Mac developers. Apple announced last year that the annual awards would now only apply to Mac and iOS apps residing in the App Store, which appears to be the case this year as well.

Through the website set up for WWDC, developers can sign up and nominate apps for inclusion in the awards. To be considered, the app must be on the App Store or Mac App Store by May 1. Note: Apps that are not nominated can still win an Apple Design Award if they catch Apple’s eye.

Last year’s winners included iPhone apps Infinity BladeCut the Rope, and Golfscape GPS Rangefinder, and iPad apps djay for iPadOsmos, and Our Choice. For Mac developers, apps including CapoPixelmator, and Anomaly Warzone Earth took home last year’s awards. At WWDC 2011, Apple also handed out awards to student developers, which will likely happen again—especially given Apple’s new scholarship program for the 2012 event.

Winners will get an Apple Design Award trophy and usually some Apple gear or prizes that have not been announced. Apple broke down the criteria for apps considered for the awards:

Well-Designed

Apps that are inviting, engaging, easy to use, intuitive, and compelling.

State of the Art

Apps that take advantage of the latest hardware, OS releases, and technologies to offer rich functionality, high performance, and extensive system integration.

Innovative

Apps that are revolutionary, inspiring, and do things in new and creative ways.

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