AppCenter is empty if apt update has never been run [$30]

Steps to reproduce:
1. Do a fresh install without connecting to the Internet
2. Fresh boot and connection to the internet
3. Open AppCenter

AppCenter fires up packagekitd and updates the software catalog transparently in the background when the session starts up

AppCenter only shows data for the pre-installed packages. packagekitd never fixes it. AppCenter is useless until you open a Terminal and manually run apt update