Namco Networks America has released a major update to Pac-Man Championship Edition for the iPhone and iPod touch including all of the expansion pack content—30 levels and 120 missions—now bundled within the app at no additional charge. Previously the game included only a handful of levels, requiring users to purchase additional levels and missions from within the application. The expansion pack Challenge Mode is also now included instead of requiring a separate purchase. Further, the update adds integration with Apple’s new Game Center in iOS 4.1 providing leaderboards for all 15 Championship mode stages and twenty unlockable achievements and also introduces new and more intuitive virtual pad controls. Pac-Man Championship Edition is available from the App Store for $5.
ABC has released an update to its ABC News application for the iPad adding new features for the 2010 U.S. Elections. ABC News 1.2 provides the ability to see live results for both Senate and Congressional elections displayed on a U.S. map as they come in. The update also adds a new “What if” game that allows users to interact with a map of the U.S. and tap on States and Congressional Districts to turn them red or blue and see how their guesses will impact the balance of power. A Settings section has also been added where users can choose a default launch view, turn shuffle on and off and choose whether to show the info screen. The new version also improves performance, wireless detection and adds more content to the globe view. ABC News for iPad is available from the App Store as a free download.
KainosAgora has released an update to TweetAgora adding more UI improvements and the ability to share Agoras with other Twitter users. TweetAgora is a Twitter client designed to allow Twitter users to get the most out of their Twitter streams by providing advanced filtering and aggregation features and the ability to create “Agoras”—custom feeds based on lists, keywords and people. TweetAgora 2.1 now allows users to share their Agoras with other users by posting them right in the Twitter stream with a #SharedAgora hashtag. Other TweetAgora users can import these Agoras directly into TweetAgora simply by tapping on the appropriate link. Users can also now customize which actions are performed when swiping a tweet in the timeline. The new version also provides a more dark-leather style UI, gap detection in Agoras and improved integration with Instapaper and Read It Later as well as performance improvements and bug fixes. TweetAgora is available from the App Store as a free download. The free version allows users to filter up to three keywords and three people, create up to three Agoras and load up to 150 tweets in a timeline. Users can upgrade to the paid version for $5 via in-app purchase to remove these limitations and add support for multiple accounts.
PBS has released a new application allowing users to stream PBS content to their iPad. PBS for iPad provides access to both current programs and a variety of content from the PBS archives as well as access to local PBS station schedules from within the app. The application provides access to classic PBS shows such as Masterpiece Theatre and Julia Child as well as some new content that has been created specifically for the iPad version. Users can also pause shows while watching and resume them later from where they left off. PBS for iPad is available from the U.S. App Store as a free download. [via TUAW]
Apple has released an update to its official Apple Store application, adding support for interacting with Apple Retail Stores and adding engraving and gift wrapping to online purchases. The Apple Store application allows users in the U.S. to purchase Apple products and accessories directly from their iOS device and read customer reviews. With version 1.1 users can now add free personal engraving for iPad and iPod purchases and choose gift wrapping for iPads, iPods select Mac notebooks and select Apple software and accessories. The new version also allows users to interact with Apple Retail Stores, including reserving certain products for pickup, making Genius Bar and One to One reservations and signing up for workshops and events. Users can choose to add Retail Store appointments directly to their calendar and request help while in an Apple Retail Store. The application uses Location Services to identify nearby Apple Retail Stores and offers users additional services when they are in a store. Notably the new Apple Store application also includes an option to reserve a white iPhone 4, however attempting to do so results in a note that Apple is “not currently taking reservations for this product” and offers users the opportunity to check their eligibility for an upgrade. The Apple Store application is currently only available in the U.S. and is a free download from the U.S. App Store.
Update: It appears the white iPhone 4 has been removed from the Apple Store app.
A number of iPad users are reporting serious problems with Condé Nast’s recently debuted Gourmet Live digital magazine application for the iPad. iLounge editors have discovered that the application causes iPads to lock up completely, requiring a hard reboot to restore normal operation, and what appears to be an extended rebuilding of the iPad’s database thereafter. After several rebuilds, the iPad can become non-responsive and require restoration in iTunes. The problem seems to most commonly occur when downloading “rewards,” or free additional content within the application, which happens automatically while users are reading articles. Numerous review comments on Gourmet Live’s App Store page show a number of similar issues being experienced by other users as well, suggesting that this is not an isolated problem. While it was not unheard of for unstable applications to cause the iPhone and iPod to lock up in the days of iOS 2.x, this behavior has become extremely rare with recent iOS versions, and is the first iPad application we’ve seen to cause serious problems of this nature.
Following the recent release of Virtual City HD for the iPad, G5 Entertainment has released an update to Virtual City for the iPhone (iLounge rating: B+) adding the promised Free Play mode. Virtual City 1.1 adds the Sand Box mode introduced in the iPad version allowing users to choose from one of five large maps to design their own city from scratch. Each Sand Box map represents one of the five U.S. states in Virtual City and players unlock each one by playing through the appropriate scenarios. The latest version also adds Game Center support for sharing achievements, improves Retina Display support and adds a number of performance optimizations and bug fixes. Virtual City for the iPhone and iPod touch is available from the App Store for $5.
Applidium has released an update to its iOS version of the popular VLC media player application adding support for iPhone and iPod touch devices. Released last month, VLC Media Player is an open-source media player for iOS devices that supports playback of a very wide variety of video formats. VLC Media Player 1.1 is now a universal app that can be used on the iPad and newer iPhone and iPod touch models. The update also adds the ability to delete files directly from within the application without having to go through iTunes, recognizes many more file extensions and includes optimizations that provide faster video decoding. VLC Media Player requires an iPad, iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS or recent iPod touch model using iOS 3.2 or later and is available from the App Store as a free download.
One Man Left has released an update to Tilt to Live adding Retina Display graphics and Game Center support. Tilt to Live is an action/arcade game for the iPhone and iPod touch where players use the accelerometer to navigate a small ship around a playing field avoiding touching red dots while trying to collect orbs that can be used to destroy them. The game provides four game types, six unlockable super-weapons and 43 award challenges. Users can post high scores to Twitter and Facebook or to global AGON online leaderboards. Version 1.5 adds high-resolution graphics for the iPhone 4 and fourth-generation iPod touch Retina Display and now integrates with Apple’s Game Center for leaderboards and awards/achievements. The update also fixes crashes in Code Red mode, improves memory usage and includes other minor bug fixes. Tilt to Live is available from the App Store for $3; an iPad version is also available.
Social network site MySpace has launched a new iPhone application, SuperPost, allowing users to simultaneously post to multiple social networks. SuperPost allows users to update their status and share photos, videos and links not only on MySpace but on rival sites Facebook and Twitter. Users can preview photos and videos before sending them, upload HD videos while using a Wi-Fi connection and pick and choose the specific services that they want to post to. The application maintains a history of all updates and posts sent from the app and supports background task completion on multitasking-capable iOS 4 devices allowing photos and videos to continue uploading even after leaving the application. The application allows only for posting of information and does not provide any facility for viewing updates from MySpace or other social networks. SuperPost is available from the App Store as a free download.
Zynga has released an update adding iPad support to its wildly popular online social game FarmVille. Originally released for the iPhone and iPod touch in June, the FarmVille app brings the online game to iOS devices, allowing players to tend to their same farms on the web or while on the go. FarmVille on the iPad features custom graphics designed specifically for the larger screen and takes advantage of the same touchscreen interface as on the iPhone with more accessible tools and menus designed for the iPad UI. The new version also improves loading times on all devices and provides bug fixes and stability improvements. FarmVille is a universal app for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad devices and is available from the App Store as a free download.
Electronic Arts has released Reckless Racing, its much-anticipated dirt-road racing game for iOS devices. In Reckless Racing players choose from five detailed tracks and a variety of vehicles and race against other vehicles driven by in-game characters or other players online in a no-rules race. Players can choose from a variety of driving controls as they progress through the races and move up through three difficulty levels. Three different game modes are available allowing players to race against other drivers or simply race to beat the clock and the game also includes integrated leaderboards and online multiplayer chat. Reckless Racing is available from the App Store in two separate versions: Reckless Racing ($3) for the iPhone and iPod touch and Reckless Racing HD ($5) for the iPad.
As Halloween approaches, several game developers have released Halloween-themed editions of popular iPhone and iPad game titles. Rovio Mobile has released special editions of its popular Angry Birds game, Angry Birds Halloween ($1) for the iPhone and iPod touch and Angry Birds Halloween HD ($2) for the iPad. Both versions add new levels with Halloween-themed objects such as spooky backgrounds and pumpkins to smash, and are purchased separately special editions of Angry Birds.
Lima Sky has updated the existing version of Doodle Jump ($1), adding a haunted Halloween theme as a free update for current users. Players can turn Doodle into a scary Doodlestein monster that must dodge zombies, vampires, witches and other creepy creatures. This latest version of Doodle Jump is a free update for current users.
Eyedip has released revamped Halloween versions of several of its popular applications, transforming them entirely rather than merely adding an additional theme. Flight Doodle ($1) and Flight Doodle HD ($3) sport an entirely new Halloween look with darker menus and orange and black falling tacks, ghouls, ghosts and zombies as enemies. Cargo planes have been replaced with a friendly witch to deliver tricks and treats as power-ups and numerous other Halloween themed objects and backgrounds have been added. Eyedip has also released the latest chapter in Pocket Devil ($1) and Pocket Devil HD ($3), dressing up the characters and sending them out for All Hallow’s Eve with a new mini-game, a pumpkin head editor, Halloween brain feast and new spooky scenery. All four games are available as free updates for current users.
Following yesterday’s acquisition of iOS game publisher Chillingo by Electronic Arts, Angry Birds developer Rovio revealed to TechCrunch that its relationship with Chillingo was limited to the original release of the iPhone and iPad games in December 2009 and April 2010 and did not evolve beyond that point. Peter Vesterbacka of Rovio told TechCrunch, “We only did the first iPad/iPhone integration with Chillingo and aside from that we’ve published everything ourselves. We will not use Chillingo again.” Rovio Mobile has published all of its other games directly since the initial deal with Chillingo, including its flagship Angry Birds game for other mobile platforms and its latest Angry Birds Halloween title for the iPhone and iPad. According to Vesterbacka, Rovio Mobile retained all intellectual property rights to Angry Birds in its contract with Chillingo, and Rovio plans to continue publishing the game independently.
The LA Times reports that Electronic Arts has purchased U.K. based iOS gaming publisher Chillingo. EA spokesperson Holly Rockwood confirmed the purchase this morning but did not provide any comment on the acquisition amount, although “sources close to the deal” cited by the LA Times indicated that the amount was less than $20 million in cash. Chillingo is a game publisher rather than a developer and the company represents a number of independent iOS developers. Popular titles released by Chillingo include Angry Birds by Rovio and Cut the Rope by ZeptoLab, both of which are currently hold top positions on the iTunes App Store charts. Neither Rovio or ZeptoLab are part of the EA acquisition. In a statement released this morning, EA noted that the acquisition will “combine Chillingo’s expertise in cultivating the ideas of independent developers with EA’s global mobile publishing reach.”
Bare Bones Software has released an iPad companion application for its popular information organizer for Mac users. Yojimbo for iPad allows users to sync their data from Yojimbo on their Mac and take it with them on the iPad, including encrypted items such as passwords. Users sync the iPad application with the Yojimbo Mac database over a local Wi-Fi connection, and once the initial pairing has been setup, sync occurs automatically whenever both versions are running on the same Wi-Fi network. The current version of the iPad app provides read-only access to the user’s Yojimbo data—items cannot be created or edited on the device—however full search capabilities are available as well as support for e-mailing entries as attachments, copying information to the clipboard or opening supported items in other applications. Yojimbo for iPad requires Yojimbo 3 for the Mac, which is a free upgrade for users of Yojimbo 2.x or $20 for users of older version of Yojimbo. Yojimbo for the iPad is available from the App Store for $10.
Readdle has released Printer Pro for the iPad, a new application allowing users to print documents wirelessly to a Wi-Fi or Mac/PC connected printer. Printer Pro integrates with the “Open In” feature on the iPad to allow users to open documents from other applications such as Mail or Safari in the Printer Pro application and then print them from there. Web pages can also be printed simply by adding a prefix to the Safari URL to redirect the web page to the Printer Pro application. A variety of Wi-Fi based printers are supported and users can also print wirelessly to a printer connected to a Mac or PC running the companion Printer Pro Desktop application. Printing support is expected to be included by Apple as a built-in feature dubbed AirPrint in the iOS 4.2 update scheduled for release in November. Although AirPrint has the potential to eliminate the need for third-party printing applications, other applications may still be able to provide a wider range of support and compatibility for Wi-Fi connected printers. Printer Pro is available from the App Store for $7.
Loopt has released an update to its social location application adding integration with Facebook’s new Places feature. Loopt allows iPhone users in the U.S. to automatically update and share their location with friends, see alerts when friends are nearby and view photos and places that friends have recently visited. Version 3.2 adds support for Facebook Places allowing Loopt users to view both their Loopt and Facebook friends on a single integrated map and automatically check-in with Facebook Places when sharing Loopt updates to Facebook. In addition comments on Loopt updates for friends who are using both Loopt and Facebook Places will be simultaneously posted to both services. Any of the user’s Facebook friends who have used Facebook Places are now shown in the Loopt friends list and the user can pull up an integrated check-in history for both Loopt and Facebook Places to see where a friend has been. The latest update also provides the ability to customize the distance at which friend alerts are displayed from between one and ten miles of the user’s current location and delivers an upgraded and simplified registration system allowing users to join using either their e-mail address or phone number. Loopt is available from the U.S. App Store as a free download.
More Blu Sky has released an update to its popular Flashlight+ LED flashlight application for the iPhone 4. Flashlight+ allows iPhone 4 users to use the built-in LED flash as a flashlight, strobe light or SOS beacon. Version 2.2 adds a new Multi-Control feature which provides the ability to send text and e-mail messages, select music playlists and update Facebook status directly from within the app. Since Apple does not permit applications to leave the LED light enabled when running in the background, the new Multi-Control feature takes advantage of iOS in-app integration and Facebook Connect to allow users to perform a few basic tasks without having to leave the Flashlight application. The new version also adds a new feature that allows users to dim and lock the iPhone screen within the app by double-tapping on it with two fingers while using the LED light. Flashlight+ requires an iPhone 4 and is available from the App Store for $1.
Gameloft has released Star Battalion, a new space combat simulation game for the iPhone and iPod touch. In Star Battalion, players take on the role of an ace star pilot leading a resistance movement against the evil Royalists who are spreading fear and terror across the galaxy. Players explore a vast universe undertaking a variety of missions ranging from combat to tactical scenarios and can choose from four different starships with different weapons and abilities designed for different missions and playing styles. Throughout the game players become immersed in a deep storyline with epic conflicts and unexpected twists as the plot unfolds and they fight to liberate the galaxy. iPhone 4 users can take advantage of Retina Display graphics and gyroscope support and the game also provides both online and local cooperative multiplayer support including Game Center integration for teaming up with other players online or comparing scores. Star Battalion is available from the App Store for $7.