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AT&T now offering refurbished iPhone 3G online

AT&T has begun offering refurbished iPhone 3G units through its online store. The company is charging $150 for the 8GB model, while both the black and white 16GB models sell for $250. As with normal, non-refurbished units, these refurbs require a two-year contract. The move follows last week’s quiet launch of online sales for new iPhone 3G units from AT&T’s website. Apple has yet to offer the iPhone 3G, either new or refurbished, through its online store in the U.S.

Click Wheel iPod Games: Lode Runner, Wonder Blocks, Reversi

  • December 16, 2008
  • iPod

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Continuing to expand its offerings heading into the holiday season, Apple has again posted three new games for the fifth-generation iPod, iPod classic, and third- and fourth-generation iPod nanos. Hudson Soft has released Lode Runner, a strategic action/puzzle game. Based on the classic computer and console title from the early 1980s, players must dig to collect all the gold in each level while avoiding robots which try to catch the player. The game features simple controls the consist of moving and digging, 130 different stages, five game modes, and both tutorial and tip videos. Lode Runner is available now from the iTunes Store and sells for $5.

imageGameloft has released Wonder Blocks, a new block-stacking game. Players travel from wonder to wonder in an attempt to rebuild well-known structures while battling time limitations and instability. The game features seven different wonders, including the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Taj Mahal, and the Eiffel Tower, and multiple game modes, including quick play, story mode, time attack, and more. Wonder Blocks is available now from the iTunes Store for $5.

imageFinally, Apple has released Reversi, a strategy game based on the popular board game Othello. Users choose either white (cream) or black markers, and must strategically place them each turn in order to box in markers of the opposite color, reversing them and gaining pieces for the player. Reversi offers three difficulty levels, in-game hints and undo, and both single player v. computer or pass-and-play multiplayer modes. Priced at $1, Reversi is available now from the iTunes Store.

Two weeks left for Best of Show submissions

The deadline for iLounge’s Best of Show 2009 Award submissions is only two weeks away, so if you’re an accessory or software developer who wants a chance at an award, now is the time to get your submission in. Any new product shown for the first time at CES or Macworld Expo in January is encouraged to contact us with details so they may be considered. Please contact iLounge publisher Dennis Lloyd ([email protected]) for information on our submission process. We look forward to your submissions!

Mix: Philips dock, Katamari, EA iPhone games, Taiwan unlock

  • December 15, 2008

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Philips has previewed its new Docking Entertainment System DC350 for iPhone and iPod. The DC350 is a vertically-oriented system, featuring a built-in dock, six watts of RMS power, a screen above the dock, and hands-free conference call functionality. The system will also include a remote, and will be released in January 2009 for $150.

Namco has released its I Love Katamari game for the iPhone and iPod touch. The game is the latest in the Katamari Damacy series, which has seen titles released across multiple platforms including the PS2, PSP, and Xbox 360. In Katamari, players assume the role of the Prince, who must roll his Katamari ball over other objects in order to collect them. As more objects are collected, the size of the ball grows, allowing the player to collect larger objects. In addition, he game offers four different game modes, and accelerometer-based controls. I Love Katamari is available now from the App Store and sells for $8.

EAMobile’s Craig Law has revealed that the company will be submitting SimCity to the App Store for approval later today. According to Law, SimCity will offer the same experience as the PC version of the game. Law also revealed that the company’s upcoming Need for Speed title, originally slated for release this year, has been pushed back to 2009; Tiger Woods and The Sims 3 are also being developed for a 2009 release.

Taiwanese iPhone carrier Chunghwa Telecom (CHT) is now selling the iPhone 3G unlocked. Prior to the device’s launch last weekend, CHT representatives had said that iPhones sold in Taiwan would be locked to their network; however, early customers are reporting that the phones are indeed unlocked, a fact confirmed by an Apple Support document. CHT sells the iPhone 3G without a contract for NT$26,600, or roughly $803, for an 8GB model, or NT$29,900 (~$903) for the 16GB version.

Apple evangelist claims iPhone is a ‘gaming console’

Speaking at a recent Apple Developer Connection iPhone Tech Talk, John Geleynse, Director of Technology Evangelism for the company, has suggested that the iPhone is now a game console-quality platform. Speaking on behalf of Apple, Geleynse referred to the iPhone as a “gaming console,” adding that “it’s not a phone, it’s a console experience.” Geleynse’s comments come on the heels of Apple efforts to position the iPhone and iPod touch as gaming devices in recent months, beginning with the release of the company’s television ad for the second-generation iPod touch and continuing with select Apple retail store previews of upcoming Electronic Arts games. Apple Vice President of iPod and iPhone Product Marketing Greg Joswiak suggested in an interview that, “as we look at it, to us it really seems this is the future of gameplay. Whereas a lot of these devices [Nintendo DS and Sony PSP] are more in the past. And a big part of that is not just the device itself, which is easier to carry, and has the touch display and accelerometer which is great for gameplay, but it’s the electronic distribution of the apps as well.”

Otterbox rolls out cases for iPod nano 4G, touch 2G

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Otterbox has introduced its Defender and Impact cases for the fourth-generation iPod nano and second-generation iPod touch, along with the Armor Series case for the touch 2G. The Impact series cases are thin, form-fitting skins offering open access to all ports and controls on the iPod nano and the screen, headphone jack, and Dock Connector on the iPod touch. The touch case also offers press-through coverage for the volume and sleep/wake buttons. Otterbox’s Impact cases for the iPod nano 4G and iPod touch 2G are available now and sell for $20 each.

The Defender series cases feature a unique three-layer design consisting of a thin clear membrane to protect the screen and Click Wheel, a hi-impact Polycarbonate skeleton, and an outer layer of silicone to provide added bump and shock protection. The iPod nano model offers access to the Dock Connector, hold switch, and headphone jack via silicone plugs, while the iPod touch model offers access to the buttons through the case, as well as access to the Dock Connector and headphone jack through silicone plugs. The Defender series cases for the iPod nano 4G and iPod touch 2G are available now and sell for $30 each.

Finally, the Armor Series case for the iPod touch 2G offers waterproof, dustproof, drop-proof, and scratch-proof protection for the iPod touch 2G. It features a patented membrane to allow for use of the touch screen while in the case, and offers an external headphone jack and included neck lanyard and belt clip. Available now, it sells for $50.

Vaja intros ivolution Grip for iPod nano 4G

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Vaja has introduced its new ivolution Grip case for the fourth-generation iPod nano. Made from soft leather, the case wraps around the back of the nano, leaving its ports, Click Wheel, and screen exposed, and also features a new Rivet clip system, which allows the case to be secured to bags, belt loops, or other materials via an optional Go Clip or KingPin Chain. The Vaja ivolution Grip for iPod nano 4G is available in a wide variety of colors and starts at $30; the Rivet Go Clip and Rivet KingPin Chain sell for $14 and $22, respectively.

iPodweek arrives later today, Take the Apple TV poll

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iPodweek, iLounge’s weekly newsletter recapping the last seven days in iPod, iPhone, iTunes and Apple TV news, articles, reviews, and more, will be sent out later today. In addition to rounding up the week’s top stories, iPodweek also features giveaways and accessory discount offers from various companies. If you haven’t yet signed up to receive iPodweek, there’s still time to register and receive this week’s edition — just use the simple form below to submit your email address.

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In addition, with over 5,600 votes from iLounge readers, our latest poll, “Which missing iPhone feature would you most like to see implemented?” has ended. Readers were given a choice between copy & paste, MMS messaging, video recording, wireless iTunes syncing, Adobe Flash support, Bluetooth stereo and data, or other features.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, copy & paste was the feature most requested by iLounge readers with 30% of the vote. The results also show a strong demand for Adobe Flash support, as it received 21% of the vote, followed by MMS messaging with 18%, and a tie between video recording and wireless iTunes syncing, both of which received 10%. Only 8% of readers felt that Bluetooth stereo and data was the feature they’d most like to see implemented, while 3% said they would rather see other improvements. Thanks to everyone who voted!

Our new poll focuses on the Apple TV. We’d like to know what you think Apple should do with the set-top box. Should they release new hardware, allowing free TV-to-iTunes recording? Officially allow apps to add more software functionality, such as streaming from Hulu and Netflix? Release a wireless game controller and support games? Kill it, and replace it with a more advanced, improved iPod dock? Or do you think it’s great as it is? The latest iLounge poll, “What should Apple do with the Apple TV?” lets you answer that question. As always, the iLounge Poll is on the left hand column of the main iLounge.com home page. Cast your vote today!

Ultimate Ears releases Triple.fi 10vi Earphones

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Ultimate Ears has introduced its new Triple.fi 10vi Earphones. Designed for use with the iPhone and other smartphones, the triple-driver earphones feature an in-line microphone and remote button for answering calls and controlling audio playback. According to Ultimate Ears, the Triple.fi 10vi also feature the same sonic signature as the company’s custom personal monitors. Included with the earphones are a 1/4” adapter jack, a hard shell carrying case, a cleaning tool, a 26” extender cable, a sound level attenuator, and a kit containing an assortment of eartips to ensure a proper fit and seal. The Ultimate Ears Triple.fi 10vi Earphones are available now and sell for $420.

Mix: Top 100 apps, Black iPhone 3G, MEMS, iPod touch ad

  • December 12, 2008

Following recent posts from iPhone developers discussing the difficulty and financial importance of getting their applications on the App Store’s top paid applications list, Apple has expanded its listings to include Top 100 lists of both paid and free applications for each category in the App Store. Prior to this change, the store only offered Top 100 lists for all applications and for games. The new lists can be accessed from either side of each category’s main page on the App Store. [via Mac Rumors]

Deveres of London has begun offering its all black iPhone 3G. This unique customized iPhone features an electroplated deep gloss black bezel in place of the standard chrome, leaving black models entirely black. Customers can order an unlocked 16GB iPhone 3G with black bezel for £799, or roughly $1192, or can have the black bezel fitted to their current 3G for £299 (~$447). In addition, the company will also inset diamonds into the bezel; pricing on the diamond inset service is not available.

According to a DigiTimes report, Apple may be planning to add a MEMS (Microelectromechanical Systems) gyroscope to the iPhone next year. The addition of a MEMS gyroscope would offer more advanced motion-sensing than the current accelerometer found in the iPhone and iPod touch. Citing anonymous market sources, the report states that “smartphones launched by Nokia, Samsung Electronics, Motorola, LG Electronics, Sony Ericsson and Apple, are all expected to come with MEMS gyroscopes in 2009.” In addition, the sources claim the gyroscopes will account for roughly three percent of the entire smartphone production cost. [via Macworld UK]

Apple has launched a new immersive web advertisement for the second-generation iPod touch on Yahoo! Games. Based on the current iPod touch 2G television ad, the web spot moves beyond the borders of the advertisement area to cause the entire upper portion of the page to move in concert with the touch. A video of the new advertisement is available online. [via MDN]

iPhone devs with 17+ rated apps unable to issue promo codes

Due to what is being described by Apple as a “minor glitch,” developers who have released applications rated 17+ are currently unable to issue promotional codes for software reviews and other purposes. Last week, Apple began letting iPhone and iPod touch developers issue promotional codes which could be redeemed on the App Store for free copies of the apps. It is unclear whether the problem is an attempt by Apple to oversee or limit the promotion of applications rated 17+ , which is roughly equivalent to a Mature rating from the Entertainment Software Rating Board, or if it is a temporary situation that will be fixed in time.

Boomwave unveils Raygun cases for iPod nano 4G, touch 2G

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Boomwave has introduced its new Raygun line of cases for the fourth-generation iPod nano and second-generation iPod touch. Made from high grade silicone, each Raygun case features a highly-detailed laser-engraved design on the back, and offers open access to all ports and controls, save for the iPod touch’s sleep/wake and volume buttons, which are useable but protected. In addition, each Raygun case includes a screen protector; the iPod nano model also includes a neck strap. Boomwave’s Raygun cases for iPod nano 4G and iPod touch 2G are available now with Peace (red-orange & white), Butterfly (white & pink), or Skull (black & red) designs, and sell for $18 and $20, respectively.

Incipio debuts Feather case for iPod touch 2G

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Incipio has introduced its new Feather case for the second-generation iPod touch. With a thickness of less than 1mm, the form-fitting Feather is made from an ultra light polymer featuring a soft touch matte finish and offering open access to all ports and controls. The Feather’s thin profile allows the touch to be used in most docks while still in the case, and it includes two screen protectors, as well as a cleaning cloth. The Incipio Feather case for iPod touch 2G is available in seven different colors and sells for $20.

Mix: Zombie Mansion, Deep Green, Warfare, Dropship

  • December 11, 2008

Source IT Software has released Zombie Mansion, its new first-person shooter game for the iPhone and iPod touch. In the game, players are trapped in a monster infested mansion and must maneuver through the house collecting keys and weapons in order to escape. It offers five levels, 3D graphics, secret rooms, ten monster types, nine different weapon and health power-ups, and three levels of difficulty. Zombie Mansion is available now from the App Store and sells for $5.

Cocoa Stuff has released its Deep Green chess application for the iPhone and iPod touch. Originally released for Apple’s Newton platform, Deep Green has been completely rewritten for the iPhone platform, offering users the ability to tap or drag pieces to move, take back moves, playback the current game, and adjust the strength of the computer opponent’s chess engine. In addition, the game saves the current game state between sessions, and has a small memory footprint for added stability. Normally priced at $8, Deep Green is available through the end of December for $5.

Spiffcode has released a version of its award-winning real time strategy game Warfare Incorporated for the iPhone and iPod touch. Previously available for other mobile platforms, the Command & Conquer-style game lets players build forces to defend and control a newly discovered planet. It features 22 unit and structure types, two different landscapes, 20 story missions and over 200 add-on missions, and a full PC-based mission editor that lets users create and publish their own missions. In addition, the developer claims that a 2-4 person multiplayer mode is currently in beta testing and is “coming soon.” Warfare Incorporated is available now from the App Store and sells for $5.

Ngmoco has released its Dropship game for the iPhone and iPod touch. Dropship is an arcade shooter-style game in which players must pilot their ship through enemy caverns destroying turrets, tanks, and interceptors in order to rescue stranded allies. The game offers “touch-anywhere” dual-analog controls, a campaign mode with 18 missions, downloadable levels, a freeplay mode, achievements, high scores, and in-game characters personalized from the user’s contacts list. Dropship is available now from the App Store and sells for $2.

AT&T now selling iPhone 3G online

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AT&T has quietly begun selling the iPhone 3G through its website. The move to offer the handset online is the first time it’s been available online in the United States, although it is sold online in other regions such as Hong Kong and Italy where the handset is available unlocked. Like with online sales of the first-generation iPhone, iPhone 3G units purchased online will need to go through an in-home activation process before use. The online ordering process includes credit and number portability checks for new customers, similar to pre-purchase screening tools launched by Apple and AT&T earlier this year. In addition, customers can choose to speak with an AT&T representative via online chat. AT&T shows eight days remaining for customers to order in time to receive their iPhone 3Gs by Christmas, and is offering free overnight shipping with each order. Apple has yet to begin offering the iPhone 3G online through its own store.

TuneUp iTunes plug-in released for Mac OS X

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TuneUp Media has announced that its popular iTunes plug-in TuneUp is now available for Mac OS X. Previously available for Windows, TuneUp helps users by automatically fixing mislabeled song information and finding missing cover art without having to leave the iTunes interface. TuneUp takes an “audio fingerprint” of mislabeled tracks, and then uses Gracenote’s Global Media Database of more than 90 million songs to fill in missing or mislabeled information, all from within a sidebar designed to compliment iTunes. Following the cleaning of the user’s library, TuneUp provides contextual content such as upcoming local concerts for artists in the user’s collection, and YouTube videos, Google news and Wikipedia biographies related to the currently playing track. The unlimited version of TuneUp, TuneUp Gold, is available for Mac OS X and Windows and sells for a one-time fee of $20 or an annual subscription of $12; a limited free version is also available.

Tekkeon myPower protects, charges iPhone 3G

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Tekkeon has introduced its new myPower combination case and battery for the iPhone 3G. Designed as an open faced leather case, the myPower offers open access to the headphone jack, Home, sleep/wake, and volume buttons, ring/silent switch, and screen. In addition to a snap closure and an included screen protector, the case features an integrated, rechargeable lithium polymer battery, with a capacity level indicator and mini-USB port for charging the battery that doubles as a charging/sync port for the iPhone. The Tekkeon myPower for iPhone is Works With iPhone certified, and is available for pre-order now for $70. It is expected to begin shipping on December 15.

Sumajin launches Clip-On Earphones

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Sumajin has introduced its new Clip-On Earphones. Made from brushed aluminum, the earphones feature adjustable rubberized earhooks for added stability, integrated ear foams for comfort, and a frequency response of 20-20,000Hz. Included with the earphones are a neoprene carry pouch and a 2 pin airline adapter. The Sumajin Clip-On Earphones are available now in black, champagne, or light blue and sell for $43.

Mix: Google 2008, South Korea, iTunes movies, Choose Your Adventure

  • December 10, 2008

Among the fastest rising terms in the United States during 2008 were “att” and “iphone,” according to Google’s Zeitgeist results for 2008, which examines search terms whose frequency increased compared to 2007. AT&T and iPhone took the third and fourth spots on the list, respectively, behind “obama” and “facebook.”

South Korea will suspend its Wireless Internet Platform for Interoperability, or WIPI, requirement on April 1, opening the door for foreign handsets like the iPhone. The WIPI requirement effectively blocked foreign handset makers from entering the South Korean market, which is currently dominated by local companies Samsung and LG. Korean telecom KTF said in 2007 that it was in negotiations with Apple to sell the iPhone in South Korea, with CEO Cho Young-chu saying the company would “have to wait” on Apple.

Following a report of various previously-available movies disappearing from the iTunes Store, CNet is reporting that the films were removed due to the structuring of the movie studios’ deals with Apple, which treat iTunes as a competitor to TV broadcasters. According to the report, TV outlets are able to dictate to studios if they would like a movie removed from online services such as iTunes during their exclusive showing windows. Apple has confirmed that the titles in question, including Atonement, Michael Clayton, and American Gangster, were pulled due to licensing requirements.

ChooseCo and Magnetism Studios have announced the release of Choose Your Own Adventure - Return to Atlantis for the iPhone and iPod touch. Based on the classic Choose Your Own Adventure books, Return to Atlantis allows readers to make choices that affect the outcome of the story by tapping on the screen, with a fully animated interface and smooth scrolling. As a bonus, the app also includes the Journey Under the Sea book. Choose Your Own Adventure - Return to Atlantis is available now from the App Store and sells for $3.

Jays intros c-Jays headphones

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Jays, known for their in-ear earphones such as the q-Jays, have introduced the c-JAYS, the company’s first pair of headphones. c-JAYS are made from fiberglass-reinforced nylon for extra durability, and feature a foldable design for portability, 40mm Elastic Multi Layer speakers, and a SGSCC (Single Crystal Copper) cable designed to minimize distortion. Included in the package are a carrying case, three sizes of foam ear cushions, two cables (60mm and 70mm), an iPhone-compatible plug with a 6.3mm adapter for larger audio systems, a stereo splitter, and an airline adapter. Jays’ c-JAYS headphones are available in black or white and sell for £80, or roughly $118.

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