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Gowalla adds Facebook + Foursquare checkins

Gowalla has released a major update to its location-based social networking application for the iPhone and iPod touch adding integration with competing location-based networks and a number of other significant new features and enhancements. Gowalla 3.0 expands its services to include Facebook Places and Foursquare, allowing users to connect to their other accounts to check-in and view friends’ check-ins across all three networks in one place. Check-ins can also be posted to Twitter and Tumblr for sharing. Users can now leave personal notes at a location for their Gowalla friends who will receive the note when they next check-in at that location and bookmark specific spots for later. Other improvements include faster check-ins based on user history, the ability to add and browse highlights for a city and the ability to flag spots to report problems or closed locations right from within the app. Gowalla 3.0 also sports a completely re-imagined user interface design to improve the user experience and makes uploading photos, creating spots and browsing friends much easier than in the previous version. Gowalla is available from the App Store as a free download. An iPad version is also available however it has not yet been updated to include these latest features.

ReaddleDocs for iPad adds multitasking, AirPrint support

Readdle has released an update to its ReaddleDocs document viewer and file manager for the iPad adding iOS 4.2 support and several other new features. ReaddleDocs for iPad 1.7 includes multitasking support including Fast App switching and background file transfers as well as adding AirPrint capabilities. Other new features include synchronization with online storage services such as iDisk, Dropbox and Readdle Storage as well as the ability to setup and configure a Readdle Storage account directly in the app. The new version also makes several speed and stability improvements in the built-in PDF viewer and allows users to configure horizontal or vertical page scrolling and choose a default page zoom setting. ReaddleDocs for iPad is available from the App Store for $5.

The Sims 3 adds Retina Display support

Electronic Arts has released an update to its original The Sims 3 game for the iPhone and iPod touch adding Retina Display support and iOS 4 Fast App switching. The Sims 3 is EA’s original title in The Sims franchise for iOS devices and was released last year, later followed by two additional expanded titles, The Sims 3 World Adventures and The Sims 3 Ambitions. Notably, neither of the subsequent titles yet include Retina Display support or iOS 4 features, even though The Sims 3 Ambitions was released in September, after the release of the Retina Display equipped iPhone 4 and fourth-generation iPod touch. EA appears to be updating other titles such as Monopoly for iOS 4 and Retina Display support as well, although we have not received word on how many of EA’s titles will be getting these updates or when they will be coming.

Acrylic Times rebrands as Pulp, adds Magic Reader

Acrylic Software has released an update to its RSS reader for the iPad, adding several new features and renaming the application Pulp for iPad. Pulp provides iPad users with a customizable newspaper-style layout for reading RSS feeds, combining multiple feeds into a single page and allowing users to quickly scan through headlines, previews and photos. Users can create their own categories to separate feeds into newspaper-like pages and customize the column layout and presentation of information on each page. The application also includes support for importing feeds from Google Reader and sharing articles via e-mail and services such as Facebook and Twitter. Pulp 1.2 adds a new Magic Reader mode that allows users to view full stories from preview-only feeds presented in a clean iPad-friendly format. The update also redesigns the reading view to take better advantage of the iPad screen and provides full support for iOS 4.2 multitasking support. Pulp was originally released as Times and was renamed to Acrylic Times and then finally renamed to Pulp as a result of legal and trademark issues. Pulp for iPad is available from the App Store for $5.

Steve Jobs confirms AirPlay for Safari, 3rd-party apps?

Apple CEO Steve Jobs has reportedly responded to a customer email, saying the company hopes to expand the scope of its AirPlay streaming feature in 2011. Mac Rumors reports that a reader emailed Jobs, asking whether Apple planned to make AirPlay video streaming available in Safari and to third-party app developers. In typically terse fashion, Jobs supposedly responded, “Yep, hope to add these features to AirPlay in 2011.” The inability to stream video from Safari or third-party apps, as well as the inability to stream videos shot on an iPhone 4 or iPhone 3GS directly to an Apple TV, have been discussed as major shortcomings of AirPlay.

Yelp adds Check-in Offers

Yelp has released an update to its social location app for the iPhone and iPod touch adding a new Check-in Offers feature. Yelp allows users to search for nearby businesses such as restaurants, bars and cafes using iOS Location Services, browse through reviews by other users and add their own quick tips, photos and reviews right from their iPhone. Yelp 4.5 adds a new Check-In Offers feature that allows users to take advantage of discounts and specials being offered by participating businesses by checking in to those locations on Yelp. Users can tap the “check-in” button within the app to indicate that they are at a business and will be presented with any available deals and offers upon checking. Businesses providing offers will be highlighted in search results and users can see a list of all offers near their location directly on the Nearby tab. Yelp is available from the App Store as a free download.

Virgin Digital releases Project iPad magazine, early thoughts

Virgin Digital has released Project, a new multimedia magazine designed specifically for the iPad. Project promises coverage of a wide range of topics including international culture, entertainment, design, business and travel though a free reader app that sells individual monthly issues for $3. Each issue includes content updated daily throughout that month, as well as videos, photo galleries and music. Previously purchased issues can be kept in the app or re-downloaded later at no additional charge. Project requires an iPad running iOS 4.2 or later and is available from the App Store as a free download.

Initial Thoughts on Project from iLounge’s Editors: Despite the hype that’s been circulating recently over the very existence of Project as a rival to News Corp.‘s upcoming iPad-exclusive publication Daily, it’s safe to say that you can easily save $3 by skipping this new magazine. Excited by the prospect of a publication guided by Virgin’s Richard Branson, we instead found Project to be a third-rate clone of the many Adobe-aided iPad magazines we’ve seen before, filling pages with weak, laddie mag-class writing and quite possibly the most useless Jeff Bridges interview we’ve ever read. Apart from its back end, which seeks to fuse what amount to blog-like web updates and comments into the application, there’s precious little novelty here.

Apple updates Game Center ToS, adds full names

Apple has updated its Game Center terms of service, notifying users that their full names will be used in conjunction with friend requests. “We have changed the Game Center terms and conditions to provide you notice that if you send a friend invitation, the full name associated with your Apple ID will be shared with the recipient,” the new document states. “If you accept a friend invitation, the full name associated with your Apple ID will be shared with the sender.” Notably, it appears users’ full names will not be shared with other users sending unknown friend requests, unless they accept the invitations.

AR.Drone Free Flight adds iPad support

Parrot has released an update to the Free Flight app for its AR.Drone Quadricopter adding native iPad support. Free Flight 1.6 is now a universal app that can be used on the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, scaling the AR.Drone’s camera images to fit the iPad display. Control sizes within the app have also been appropriately adapted for the larger iPad screen and users can now adjust the transparency setting for control buttons. Free Flight 1.6 also includes a firmware update for the AR.Drone and is available from the App Store as a free download.

Black Friday deals on the App Store

Several iOS developers are offering Black Friday specials today on the App Store, with discounts of up to 80% off normal prices and popular games and apps selling today for as low as $1.

In the GPS and navigation category, ALK Technologies is offering three of its CoPilot Live apps at approximately 50% off the normal prices. CoPilot Live USA is available for $3, CoPilot Live North America at $10, and CoPilot Live HD North America, for the iPad, at $20.

Navigon is also offering 50% off on its USA and MyRegion GPS navigation apps, with MobileNavigator USA priced at $30 today, and MobileNavigator MyRegion East, MyRegion West and MyRegion Central at $20 each.

Vito Technology, creators of the popular Star Walk stargazing guide has marked all of their apps down to a dollar for both Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Apps on sale for $1 include Star Walk for iPhone, Star Walk for iPad, Solar Walk, Geo Walk for iPad and Family Doctor. The company is also offering its Geo Walk for iPhone for free during the sale. All of the apps can be found on Vito Technology’s App Store page.

Readdle has marked down its apps by 80%, including its popular Readdle Docs document viewing app which is selling for $1 (iPhone) and $2 (iPad). Readdle’s other apps have been similarly marked down, including PDF Expert ($2), Calendars ($2), Scanner Pro ($1), Printer Pro ($2). These apps can be found on Readdle’s App Store Page. Readdle’s sale runs until November 30th, 12:00 PM PDT.

Open Door Networks is selling Art Authority at 50% off. Art Authority for iPad has been marked down to $5, and Art Authority for iPhone to $4 for today only.

On the gaming front, Namco Networks has slashed prices on almost all of its titles down to $1. Games on sale include all of the PAC-MAN titles, Pole Position Remix, Pool Pro Online, Star Trigon and more. Other Namco games are also on sale including Ace Combat Xi, I Love Katarmari and Ridge Racer Accelerated at $3 each and Time Crisis 2nd Strike at $5. The games can all be found on the Namco Networks App Store page.

Gameloft has marked down several of its popular iPhone and iPad titles to $1 today, including Iron Man 2 and Iron Man 2 for iPad, Hero of Sparta II and Hero of Sparta II HD, Asphalt 5, Brothers in Arms 2: Global Front and Brothers in Arms 2: Global Front HD, UNO, The Settlers and The Settlers HD, NFL 2011, Let’s Golf 2 and Let’s Golf 2 HD, Shrek Kart and Shrek Kart HD, Splinter Cell: Conviction and Splinter Cell: Conviction HD and Shrek Forever After: The Game HD. The sale runs until Sunday, November 28th.

Electronic Arts has slashed prices on many of its popular games by up to 80% with many titles marked down to $1, including The Sims 3 World Adventures, The Sims 3 Ambitions, SimCity Deluxe, NCAA Football by EA Sports, Need for Speed Shift, Tetris, Littlest Pet Shop, Need for Speed Undercover, Yahtzee HD, RISK, The Game of Life, Monopoly, Monopoly Here & Now The World Edition, Scrabble, Reckless Racing HD and The Simpsons Arcade. MADDEN NFL 11 by EA Sports for iPad, Rock Band, Mirror’s Edge for iPad and Scrabble for iPad are on sale for $5 each.

Chillingo is also offering deep discounts of up to 80% off many of its popular titles, including Cogs HD ($2), Billabong Surf Trip ($1), Radio Flare Redux ($1), Radio Flare Redux HD ($1), Parking Mania HD ($1), Defender Chronicles - Legend of the Desert King ($1), Master of Alchemy HD ($1), Master of Alchemy ($1) and Fiona’s Flowers HD ($1). Chillingo’s sale runs until Sunday, November 28th.

Pangea Software is selling all of its games for $1 for a limited time. The list of games includes Enigmo, Enigmo 2, Enigmo Deluxe, Cro-Mag Rally, Nanosaur 2, Billy Frontier, Bugdom 2, Warheads, Otto Matic and Antimatter. All of the games can be found on Pangea’s App Store page.

Sling Media releases SlingPlayer for iPad

Sling Media has released an iPad version of its Slingbox client for iOS devices. SlingPlayer Mobile for iPad allows users to stream TV and other video content to their iPad from select Slingbox devices using a Wi-Fi or 3G connection. Users can view and control video content via the SlingPlayer app and Slingbox from sources such as cable, satellite and IPTV set-top boxes and DVRs, TiVO, Apple TV and even home security cameras. Slingbox Pro-HD users can also stream digital over-the-air broadcasts. SlingPlayer Mobile for iPad follows the release of SlingPlayer for iPhone ($30) earlier this year with a redesigned iPad-native interface including a revamped programming guide and a recent channels feature. Slingbox for iPad is sold separately from the iPhone version and is available from the App Store for $30. The SlingPlayer applications for iOS require a Slingbox Solo or Pro-HD and are not compatible with older Slingbox devices.

CoreMIDI apps begin appearing for iOS 4.2

Following Monday’s release of iOS 4.2 Apple has now begun to approve third-party applications that provide support for its new CoreMIDI functionality. CoreMIDI allows applications to send and receive Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) commands directly from an iOS device without requiring specialized third-party hardware. Developers can instead use a standard set of API calls to communicate with external MIDI devices through the Dock Connector using Apple’s iPad Camera Connection Kit to interface with MIDI devices over USB or interface with wireless MIDI transceivers over Wi-Fi. The new CoreMIDI technology provides a simpler way for developers to leverage the iPad and other iOS devices in a wide variety of professional studio applications ranging from digital music composition to complex lighting control. Luminair for iPad ($130) by Synthe FX is among the first such professional-grade MIDI applications to be released with the new CoreMIDI functionality, transforming the iPad into an advanced yet intuitive multitouch console for lighting designers.

News Corp. to announce iPad newspaper at Apple event?

A pair of new reports suggest that News Corp, headed by Rupert Murdoch, will announce a new tablet-based newspaper at an upcoming Apple event. The Guardian reports that the new paper, called the Daily, is a collaboration between Apple and News Corp and has been under development in New York for several months. The report goes on to state that the paper will cost 99 cents per week, and will be able to be delivered automatically to an iPad using a new subscription plan from Apple.

John Gruber of Daring Fireball, in linking to the aforementioned report, suggests that the initiative will launch with a press event, with Murdoch—and possibly other newspaper and magazine executives—joining Steve Jobs on stage. In addition, Gruber states that he’d heard December 9th as possible date for the event, but notes that this is a Thursday, an unusual day for Apple to hold a press event. Gruber goes on to state that based on information from sources outside Apple, the event will not be for a central “iNews” or “Newsstand” app from Apple, but will instead be for a new recurring subscription billing option for apps, paid through the user’s iTunes account. He also states that the News Corp developers working on the new Daily app have been given “preliminary documentation on the new subscription billing APIs from Apple.”

Apple updates iWork for iPad suite

Apple has updated its three iWork apps for the iPad: Pages, Numbers and Keynote to add support for iOS 4.2. The updates add wireless printing via AirPrint and support for iOS 4.2 multitasking and Numbers also adds a print preview feature to allow users to adjust how a sheet will print across multiple pages. The PDF export from Numbers will also respect any pagination settings created in the print preview. Numbers users can also now enter formulas using a keyboard and the predictive function selector. Keynote 1.3 adds an enhanced presenter display that now allows users to see the current slide, the next slide or their notes when connected to an external display. Keynote users can also now import and add presenter notes to slides from within the app. The update also improves reliability when importing and exporting iWork for Mac and Microsoft Office documents, fixes issues related to WebDAV and adds additional localizations for Portuguese, Danish, Finnish, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Swedish and Traditional Chinese. Pages, Numbers and Keynote are sold individually from the App Store for $10 each.

Parrot announces AR.Pursuit game for AR.Drone

Parrot has announced the first game app for its AR.Drone iPhone-controlled quadricopter released earlier this year. AR.Pursuit is a two-player game that allows AR.Drone users to conduct augmented-reality dogfights using their iOS devices and the integrated cameras on their AR.Drones. In the game, one player takes on the role of pursuer and attempts to target and shoot down their opponent who must try to escape and survive as long as possible without being hit. The pursuer uses virtual weapons including an automatic machine gun and missiles to target and attack their fleeing opponent, with the AR.Drone physically reacting to virtual attacks making escape more difficult. The pursued/pursuer roles automatically switch after each successful missile strike or at a half-time point in the game and the winner is the player who survives the longest without being shot down. AR.Drones are identified using the different colour outdoor hulls or stickers than can be placed on the indoor hull, and a Bluetooth connection is used between iOS devices for multiplayer support. AR.Pursuit is expected to be available in the App Store by the end of November.

THQ launches Star Wars Arcade: Falcon Gunner

THQ Wireless has released a new Star Wars Arcade game for the iPhone and iPod touch featuring augmented reality technology. Star Wars Arcade: Falcon Gunner puts players in the Millennium Falcon’s gun turret where they must blast their way through waves of TIE fighters and Star Destroyers across over 20 arcade-style levels based on the Star Wars movies. The game includes legendary missions such as the Death Star escape, the asteroid field pursuit over Hoth and the infamous Kessel Run. iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 and fourth-generation iPod touch users can also engage an optional augmented reality mode that allows players to use the device’s camera to overlay enemy fighters on top of real-world surroundings and control movement with 360-degree full body motion using the device’s accelerometer/compass or gyroscope. A coming free update will also allow users to take and share augmented reality photos from within the Falcon’s turret. The game is compatible with the iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 and iPod touch and requires iOS 4.1 or later with an iPad version scheduled for release in December. Star Wars Arcade: Falcon Gunner is available from the App Store for $5.

Oceanhouse Media releases Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

Oceanhouse Media, developer of the popular Dr. Seuss and Berenstain Bears children’s applications has released a new digital book for the holiday season. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer presents the classic children’s Christmas story in an interactive multimedia digital book that includes background music and audio, enlarged artwork for each scene and audio clips from the timeless 1964 TV Christmas special. The application is designed to be both entertaining and educational, promoting reading in young children by highlighting individual words as the story is read or allowing children to simply read the story for themselves without narration. Images and animated effects are used to build word associations and keep children engaged in the reading experience,  Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is a universal app for both the iPhone/iPod touch and iPad and is available from the App Store for $3.

Magellan RoadMate adds iOS 4 multitasking, traffic info

Magellan has released an update to its RoadMate turn-by-turn GPS navigation app for the iPhone adding support for background navigation on multitasking-capable iOS 4 devices, traffic information and several other new features. RoadMate 1.3 now allows iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 users to continue to receive voice guidance instructions while using another application and provides uninterrupted navigation even while on a phone call. The new version also now includes real-time traffic information with no additional in-app purchase or subscription required. Traffic data is provided by NAVTEQ and displays both incident information as well as general traffic flow for a given route. Additional new features include the ability to share points of interest and routes via e-mail, receive offers and coupons for nearby businesses and navigate while listening to music with intelligent volume fading during voice guidance. RoadMate is also compatible with the iPod touch when used with Magellan’s Premium Car Kit. Magellan RoadMate is currently available from the App Store in three versions based on the number of included maps: Magellan RoadMate North America ($45), Magellan RoadMate USA ($35) and Magellan RoadMate Canada & Alaska ($30).

Duck Duck Moose releases Park Math HD

Duck Duck Moose has released an iPad version of its award-winning Park Math educational game for the iOS platform. Selected as the Best Kids’ iPhone/iPod App of the Year in our 2011 Buyers’ Guide, Park Math teaches basic math concepts to young children through a charmingly illustrated collection of activities set in a park and playground theme with classical music and colorful original characters. Park Math HD brings the same engaging learning experience to the larger iPad screen with seven fun activities and an extra third level targeted at first grade children to teach counting up to 100 and addition and subtraction with numbers up to 20. Park Math HD is available from the App Store for $2.

Apple to launch iAd in Europe in December

Apple has announced that it will launch its iAd mobile advertising network in the UK and France this December, with Germany to follow in February. According to the release, the European iAd launch will see new ads from L’Oréal, Renault, Louis Vuitton, Nespresso, Perrier, Unilever, Citi, Evian, LG Display, AB InBev, Turkish Airlines and Absolute Radio. Apple claims that iAd has signed on over half of the top 25 leading US national advertisers in just four months, with a projected 21 percent share of US mobile display advertising revenue for 2010 according to research firm IDC. Also mentioned in the release is a seemingly new iAd website, advertising.apple.com.

“We’re thrilled to add leading global brands to the iAd Network in Europe and create even more great opportunities for developers,” said Andy Miller, Apple’s vice president of iAd. “In just four months, we’ve doubled the number of advertisers on the network and thousands of developers now have a valuable new source of revenue.”

“As the world leader in the beauty business, L’Oréal aims to create the most meaningful connections between its brands and its customers, so iAd was a natural choice,” said Marc Menesguen, L’Oréal’s Head of strategic marketing. “We’re thrilled by the quality, the interactivity and the depth of iAd’s user experience, giving us an unparalleled opportunity to reach and serve the most engaged and discerning customers at the digital forefront of beauty, hence our choice of Lancôme to lead our iAd campaign.”

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