Skype Software has released an update to its Skype iPhone application that brings multitasking support to iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS units running iOS 4.0. The update allows users to receive Skype calls and IMs while other apps are running or even when the phone is locked, and also allows users to continue current calls when switching to another application. Curiously, the update is listed in the App Store as version 2.0.1, but the release notes refer to it as version 2.1. Skype for iPhone is available now as a free download from the App Store.
Apple subsidiary FileMaker has released its new FileMaker Go apps for the iPhone/iPod touch and iPad. FileMaker Go allows users to access FileMaker Pro databases over a local network or remotely via Wi-Fi or 3G. Users can add, modify, or delete data, find, sort, and navigate records, open windows, and switch layouts, and FileMaker GO offers support for tab controls, Quick Find, web viewers, external SQL data sources, containers, portals and many scripts. FileMaker Go for iPhone and iPod touch is $20 and requires iOS 4, while FileMaker Go for iPad sells for $40.
Apple has released iBooks 1.1.1, the latest version of its e-book reading application for the iPod touch, iPhone, and iPad. According to Apple, the new version includes the ability to double-tap images to view more detail, support for audio and video within books, performance improvements for PDF reading, fixes for an issue that caused some book downloads not to complete, and other stability and performance improvements. iBooks 1.1.1 is available now from the App Store.
iHandySoft has released an update to its popular Alarm Clock Pro app adding the ability for users of multitasking-capable iOS 4 devices to receive alarms from the app in the background. Alarm Clock Pro 1.1 provides support for local notifications allowing users to receive sound notifications even when the app is not actively running. The update also fixes a bug where the date picker may not display correct AM/PM status when editing alarms on iOS 4 devices. Alarm Clock Pro continues to support all of the features from prior versions, including an on-screen digital clock, flashlight feature, sleep timer, snooze mode, vibrate mode and multiple clock themes. Users can choose from one of seven built-in alarm sounds or choose a song or playlist to use as an alarm. Alarm Clock Pro is available from the App Store for $1 and is a free update for current users. A free version is also available that provides only built-in alarm sounds, limited themes and does not include flashlight mode or background alarm support.
Good.iWare has released an update to its popular GoodReader document reader for iPhone and iPod touch devices adding iOS 4 compatibility. GoodReader 2.8.2 adds support for new features found in iOS 4 including USB file transfer, video output and Fast App Switching. The update additionally provides the ability to open documents in GoodReader from other supported apps such as Mail and Safari as well as sending documents from GoodReader into other applications that support Document Interchange. Other new features include the ability to crop margins for PDF files to save screen space, horizontal or vertical swiping of PDF pages and pre-caching of PDF pages for improved page turning performance. Users can now also import recorded videos from the iPhone 3GS or iPhone 4 photo library. GoodReader for iPhone is available from the App Store for $1 and is a free update for current users. A free GoodReader Lite version is also available providing all of the features of the full version with a five-document storage limit.
Mozilla has released its Firefox Home app providing iOS device users with the ability to sync information from Firefox on their desktop computer. Announced earlier this month, Firefox Home provides users of Firefox with the ability to sync and access their desktop history, bookmarks and currently open tabs on their iPhone, iPod touch or iPad, enabling easy access to this information while on the go. The app uses the Firefox Sync browser plug-in to securely synchronize data from Firefox on a desktop computer to Firefox Home on the iOS device. From the app, users can browse and search through their history, bookmarks and tabs and open them in Mobile Safari or share them via e-mail. Firefox Home is available from the App Store as a free download.
Yahoo! has released an update to its official Flickr app adding support for iOS 4 multitasking and several other new features. Flickr 1.2 now supports background task completion allowing in-progress photo uploads to complete after closing the app. The update now also provides support for posting uploaded photos to Twitter using a flic.kr short URL and uploading HD video. Other new features include iOS 4 Fast App Switching, enhanced full-screen browsing and the ability to clear recent searches. Flickr is available from the App Store as a free download.
Apple has posted its iOS Software Development Kit (SDK) 4.0.1, bringing with it compatibility with the latest iOS software releases. Notably, Apple is warning developers that if they have updated their iPhones to iOS 4.0.1 or their iPads to iOS 3.2.1 they will need to download and install the new SDK to continue development. Unlike the iOS 4.1 beta and accompanying SDK released yesterday, iOS SDK 4.0.1 is available to all registered developers, and not just those who have paid Apple’s $99 annual fee to enroll in the iPhone Developer Program. Apple’s iOS SDK 4.0.1 is available now as a free download from the iPhone Dev Center.
Apple has released its first beta version of iOS 4.1, along with an accompanying software development kit (SDK), to registered iPhone developers. Notably, there is no version of the beta operating system available for the iPad, suggesting that contrary to prior reports, iOS 4.1 will not be a platform-unifying release, but will instead cater to Apple’s pocketable devices exclusively. It is currently unknown what, if any, new features or APIs may be included in the update; it is also unknown whether it is meant to help alleviate initial problems with the iPhone 4, or whether those fixes will come in an incremental 4.0.1 update. Both the new iOS 4.1 SDK and pre-release builds are available now for download by registered iPhone developers from the iPhone Dev Center.
Tapbots, developer of the popular Convertbot and Pastebot apps, has released a new universal calculator app for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Calcbot is a simple and intelligent calculator that includes advanced functions and calculation history features. The application sports the same general design aesthetic as Tapbots’ other apps with an elegant yet simple user interface that includes animation and sound. Calcbot provides a live as-you-type expression history presented as a calculator tape view that shows all figures and expressions; users can also e-mail their calculation history as text or select values and expressions to send back to the calculator. The iPhone 4 Retina Display and iOS 4 Fast App Switching are also supported. Calcbot is currently available from the App Store for $1.
Audible has released a native iOS application for downloading and listening to audiobooks from Audible.com on an iPhone or iPod touch. The Audible application allows users to browse through and download audiobooks from their Audible.com library over a Wi-Fi connection and listen to any downloaded titles directly from within the app. Users can begin listening to an audiobook while it is downloading and iOS 4 multitasking support allows users of multitasking-capable devices to continue downloading and listening to an audiobook even while the Audible app is not actively running. The application also supports chapter navigation, bookmarking and a sleep timer and provides Facebook and Twitter integration and access to the Audible Newsfeed. The Audible app maintains its own library on the device rather than integrating with the built-in iPod app—Audible titles still need to be synced separately via iTunes in order to appear in the normal iPod Audiobooks section. The app also does not provide direct purchasing capabilites although users can visit Audible.com using the Safari browser to purchase titles and add them to their library, at which point they can be downloaded by the Audible app. Only Audible.com accounts are supported at this time, with Audible.co.uk, Audible.de and Audible.fr said to be coming soon. Audible is available from the App Store as a free download; an Audible.com account is required and users can sign up for a new account directly from the app.
Nimbuzz has released an update to its instant messaging and voice-over-IP application adding support for background Internet calling on multitasking-capable iOS 4 devices. With Nimbuzz 2.0.1 users of the iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 and third-generation iPod touch can now receive and answer VoIP calls even when the Nimbuzz app is not actively running in the foreground. Users can also continue to carry on a conversation via Nimbuzz while accessing other apps on their iPhone or iPod touch or access other Nimbuzz features such as IM chat while within the app. Nimbuzz also works seamlessly with background audio applications such as the built-in iPod app, Spotify or Pandroa, automatically muting playback on an incoming call. In addition to its own VoIP network, Nimbuzz also supports Skype and SIP-based VoIP providers. Nimbuzz 2.0.1 is available from the App Store as a free download, however VoIP calls may incur additional charges depending on the network being used.
Mark/Space has updated its advanced iPhone sync utility to support iOS 4 and iTunes 9.2. The Missing Sync provides iPhone users with the ability to sync additional information between their device and their computer beyond that supported by iTunes. With The Missing Sync, users can backup and archive SMS messages, visual voicemail messages, voice memos and call history and organize, view and access them via a set of included desktop applications. The Missing Sync also provides synchronization support for Mark/Space’s Fliq productivity apps, allowing users to sync notes, tasks and documents with their iPhone over a Wi-Fi connection. The Mac version also includes a tool for creating and editing ringtones from any non-protected track in a user’s iTunes library. The Missing Sync is available for Windows and Mac OS X from the developer’s web site for $40.
Posterous has released an update to its utility for posting photos and videos to Posterous.com adding background uploading on multitasking-capable iOS 4 devices and updated graphics for the iPhone 4 Retina Display. PicPosterous allows Posterous users to upload photos and videos to Posterous from the camera or the device’s saved photos library, either creating new albums on Posterous or adding photos to previous albums. Users can also delete photos from albums, geo tag photos and videos during upload, and manage and create multiple sites and albums. Uploaded videos are converted and stored by Posterous in both Flash and QuickTime-compatible formats allowing them to be viewed in a most desktop and mobile browsers. PicPosterous also supports HD-quality videos when recorded from within the app itself; videos selected from the device’s photo library remain limited to VGA quality. New users can create a Posterous album simply by submitting pictures with no account required, or optionally register on Posterous.com to manage multiple sites, create private albums and automatically post updates to other services such as Twitter, Facebook and Flickr. PicPosterous is available from the App Store as a free download.
Navigon has updated its MobileNavigator turn-by-turn navigation applications, adding support for iOS 4 Background Location and Fast App Switching on multitasking-capable devices and several other new features. In addition to multitasking, MobileNavigator 1.6 adds live weather information, directions to parking, voice guidance for pedestrian mode and an enhanced Reality View Pro. The new Live Weather feature updates and reports current weather conditions enroute and at the destination with temperature and weather conditions shown in the route overview screen during navigation. A new Clever Parking feature enables users to display a list of available parking areas near their destination and easily plot a route to a parking spot. Support for iOS 4 Background Location allows MobileNavigator to continue running in the background and providing voice guidance on multitasking-capable devices. MobileNavigator will also automatically shut down background location mode when no route is active or once you’ve reached your destination, avoiding unnecessary power consumption from the GPS hardware. The latest update also adds enhanced graphics for the iPhone 4 Retina Display and includes the latest NAVTEQ map data, while bringing the Navigon MyRegion suite of regional apps up to the same feature level as the main MobileNavigator series; the MyRegion apps have been renamed to MobileNavigator MyRegion to reflect this. MobileNavigator North America is available from the App Store for $50 until July 22 and is a free update for current users. Versions for other countries can be found on Navigon’s App Store page.
Fring has released an update to its iOS voice and video communications app adding support for two-way video calling and multitasking on capable iOS 4 devices. Although Fring added one-way video calling to its iPhone application last December, the lack of a front-facing camera on the earlier iPhone models precluded its use for two-way video conferencing. With the addition of the new front-facing camera on the iPhone 4, Fring users can now engage in bi-directional video calls over either Wi-Fi or 3G from the iPhone 4. As a cross-platform client, users of Fring on the iPhone can also conduct video calls with users on Android and Symbian S60 devices. Users of older iPhone models can also now participate in two-way video calls using the built-in camera, however the absence of the front-facing camera on these devices makes face-to-face video calling less practical. The latest version also adds iOS 4 multitasking support, a new social stream for integrating Twitter, Facebook, chats and call updates in a single view, and a smarter address book for managing the buddy list and contacts. Fring is available from the App Store as a free download.
Update: Our preliminary testing indicates that the two-way video calling works fine on older iPhone models as well, although as noted the feature may be less useful here due to the lack of a front-facing camera. Video and audio quality are noticeably lower than FaceTime, even over a Wi-Fi connection. Further, on the iPhone 4 only the front-facing camera appears to be used with no way of switching to the rear-facing camera as in FaceTime. The main advantages over FaceTime are 3G support and compatibility with older iPhone models and Android and Symbian S60 devices.
iOS developer Ricky Bloomfield, known for his G-Whizz unified Google Apps browser, has released a new mobile app browser for social networking applications. G-Whizz Social provides a single app with tabbed browsers for Google Talk, Google Buzz, Facebook, Twitter and MySpace within a single app. Users can remain logged in to any of these services and effortlessly switch back and forth between them using a menu bar at the bottom of the screen. External links are opened using a built-in quick-view browser and integration with Instapaper and Read It Later allows users to save links from any of their social network services for later reference or repost links via e-mail or Twitter. G-Whizz Social is a universal app for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad and provides full iOS 4 support with Fast App Switching for multitasking-capable devices. G-Whizz Social is available from the App Store for $1.
Developer Kevin Smith has released an iOS text editor for Dropbox users. Droptext is a universal app for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad that allows users to open, edit and save text files directly within their Dropbox account. In addition to standard text files, the application allows users open any file with a text-based mime type, such as HTML files, PHP scripts, and C programming code. Viewing of other non-text-based file types is not supported. Droptext is available from the App Store for $1.
Rogue Amoeba has released an update to Airfoil Speakers Touch adding support for background audio on multitasking capable iOS 4 devices. Airfoil Speakers Touch allows users to stream audio to their iOS device from a Mac or PC on the same Wi-Fi network, effectively allowing the iPhone or iPod touch to act as a set of remote headphones. With the latest update users of the iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS and third-generation iPod touch can now keep Airfoil Speakers Touch playing audio in the background while using other applications. The update also includes updated graphics for the iPhone 4 Retina Display and several other minor improvements. Airfoil Speakers Touch 1.1 is available from the App Store as a free download. Streaming audio from a PC or Mac requires Airfoil for Mac or Airfoil for Windows to be installed on the host computer.
Demiforce has released an update to its acclaimed Trism puzzle game for the iPhone and iPod touch, adding native iPad support and fixing some iOS 4 related problems. First released in July 2008, Trism was the first Match-3 puzzle game to make use of the iPhone’s accelerometer feature and was a runaway success in its category. Trism 1.5 maintains the same game play and features as the original with five game modes, online scoring and 22 in-game achievements that can be collected. The update fixes stability problems that some users have experienced with iOS 4.0, adds native iPad support and provides code optimizations that should result in improved battery life. Trism 1.5 is available from the App Store for $3 and is a free update for current users.