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Vers launches open-front Shellcases for iPod, iPhone

Vers has introduced its new open-front Shellcase wooden cases for the iPod touch and iPhone. Made from Walnut, Cherry, or Bamboo, each case features a soft, scratch-resistant lining, steel pin reinforced corners for added strength, a durable UV and moisture-resistant clear coat, and offers access to the screen and home button, iPhone sensors, camera, headphone jack, and sleep/wake button. Vers’ new open-front Shellcase wooden cases for the iPhone and iPod touch are available now and sell for $40 each.

iPhone developer accused of stealing phone numbers

A class action lawsuit (PDF Link) has been filed against iPhone game developer Storm8 accusing the company of secretly transmitting and collecting players’ phone numbers. Storm8 makes a variety of games available for download from the App Store, including iMobsters, Vampires Live, and Zombies Live, which the company says have been downloaded more than 20 million times, making them “the number one role-playing games for the iPhone and iPod touch.” While the suit acknowledges that Storm8 admitted to transferring players’ phone numbers in August, calling the problem a “bug,” it also states that the company “could not have accidentally harvested its users’ phone numbers” and needed to use “very specific and specialized software code to do so.” This is not the first time a company has been accused of secretly stealing users’ phone numbers via an application; European application mogoRoad was said to be transferring users’ numbers and using them to place the unsolicited calls in September.

Quirky intros Beamer case for iPhone 3G, 3GS

Quirky, a community product development service, has introduced the Beamer, its new case for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS. Made from hard plastic, the Beamer is a two-piece case with an integrated LED light. A recessed button on the side of the case opposite the volume buttons and ring/hold switch allows users to turn the light on for 10 second bursts—good for photos—or indefinitely if needed for longer periods. Other features include access to all ports and controls, a replaceable cell coin battery good for 10 hours of LED operation, and a slide-off bottom for easy docking. Quirky’s Beamer case for iPhone 3G and 3GS is available for pre-order now and sells for $32.

Apple’s Jobs named ‘CEO of the decade’

Fortune magazine has named Apple co-founder and CEO Steve jobs its CEO of the decade. “Superlatives have attached themselves to Jobs since he was a young man. Now that he’s 54, merely listing his achievements is sufficient explanation of why he’s Fortune’s CEO of the Decade (though the superlatives continue),” Adam Lashinsky writes in a two-page overview of Jobs’ business history. “In the past 10 years alone he has radically and lucratively reordered three markets—music, movies, and mobile telephones—and his impact on his original industry, computing, has only grown. Remaking any one business is a career-defining achievement; four is unheard-of.” In the multi-part tribute, Fortune also offers an interactive timeline of key products and releases from the last ten years, a list of the top 10 moments from his career, interviews with eight important figures that have known Jobs throughout his life, and more.

Intel responds on iPhone sync issues

Intel has issued a comment concerning the iPhone sync issues some users are experiencing with certain PCs containing a specific Intel chipset. “Our leading theory is a BIOS or system configuration issue, but we are still investigating,” Intel said. The basic input/output system (BIOS) is the boot firmware run by a PC on startup, which identifies, tests, and initializes core system devices such as the graphics card, hard disk, and other hardware. As we reported earlier this week, the syncing issue appears to linked to Intel’s P55 Express chipset and its USB controller, which leaves the afflicted machines able to recognize the iPhone but unable to sync. The problem has been most prevalent among PCs running 64-bit Windows 7, but the issue has also been reported on machines running both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of both Windows 7 and Vista.

iFlipWallet debuts iFlip case for iPhone 3G, 3GS

iFlipWallet has introduced the iFlip, a new case for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS. The iFlip is a combination case and wallet, made from genuine leather and offering a wallet-like, flip-out addition on the rear of the case. Features include access to all ports and controls whether the wallet portion is opened or closed, access to the camera when the wallet is open, and several card slots on the interior of the wallet, including one with a clear cover to keep IDs visible. The iFlip iPhone wallet is available now and sells for $50.

iSkin rolls out solo FX SE for iPhone 3G, 3GS

iSkin has introduced its new solo FX Special Edition (SE) case for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS. Like the previously-released solo and solo FX for iPhone 3G, the SE is a form-fitting case, featuring integrated volume and power button protection, an embossed design pattern for added visual interest, and unobstructed access to all ports and controls. Unlike prior models, however, the solo FX SE features a more subdued matte finish with a textured surface, and includes both clear and mirror-finish screen film protectors. The solo FX SE for iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS is available now in black, pink, or white, and sells for $35.

Boomwave unveils Kruz cases for iPod touch 2G, 3G

Boomwave has unveiled its new Kruz cases for the second- and third-generation iPod touch. Like the company’s prior Kruz cases for the iPhone 3G, the Kruz cases for iPod touch feature an inner ABS hard shell with a faux leather exterior, and come in white, pink, or black, each with a unique design on the rear shell. Each case offers full access to all ports and controls, and also includes a screen protector. Boomwave’s Kruz cases for the iPod touch 2G and 3G are available now and sell for $24 each.

First iPod poll ends, iTunes TV subscription poll begins

With over 3,100 votes from iLounge readers, our most recent poll—“Do you still have your first iPod?” has ended. Readers could choose from two positive responses or five negative, with a separate option for those who have never owned an iPod.

With exactly 50% of the vote, the majority of readers said they still have their first iPod, and it still works. Another 12% said they still have it, but it is no longer operational, while 11% said they sold their first model to upgrade to a newer iPod. 9% said they gave it to a friend or family member, 7% said they got rid of their first after it stopped working, and an unfortunate 4% said their first iPod ended up lost or stolen. Only 1% said they sold their first iPod to upgrade to an iPhone, while 5% said they have never owned an iPod. Thanks for all your votes!

Our new poll focuses on the Apple TV and the rumored $30 iTunes TV subscription plan. We’d like to know if a $30 iTunes subscription option would be enough to make you buy an Apple TV? Would you buy it if the service included all, or at least some of the shows you enjoy watching, or only if Apple increased the storage or lowered the price of the Apple TV? Or would it not be enough to convince you to purchase, or do you already own an Apple TV? Our new poll, “Would a $30 monthly iTunes TV subscription service be enough to make you buy an Apple TV?” lets you answer that question. As always, you can find the iLounge Poll in the left-hand column of the main home page. Cast your vote today!

Apple planning Music Movies push on iTunes

Apple has launched a new Music landing page in the iTunes Store’s Movies section, ahead of a broader push that will see the company attempting to negotiate exclusive access to new music-themed movies to make them available on iTunes prior to the physical DVD release. Billboard reports that the first such exclusive will be for It Might Get Loud, a documentary about guitarists Jimmy Page, Jack White, and The Edge; iTunes will offer it from December 8-22, before any other outlet, and pre-orders are available now. Another exclusive is the Kings of Leon concert film Kings of Leon, Live at the O2. In addition, Apple is said to be expanding its catalog of older music-based films, including titles such as Woodstock, The Doors, This is Spinal Tap, and John Lennon Imagine. [via AppleInsider]

Sony releases 1,000 Ringtones for iPhone

Sony Creative Software has released 1,000 Ringtones, a new DVD containing a collection of ringtones grouped into music, sound effects, and spoken word categories. Developed with iPhone users in mind, all 1,000 ringtones included on the DVD are in .m4r and .mp3 formats, and are ready for use without any additional fees, downloads, or editing. Users can simply browse the ‘tones directly from the DVD and drag any selected tones into iTunes for synchronization. 1,000 Ringtones is available now as either a DVD shipment or direct .zip archive download and sells for $20.

Apple: Over 100,000 apps now available on the App Store

Apple has officially announced that there are now more than 100,000 applications available on the App Store. iPhone and iPod touch users in 77 countries have access to the store, which includes 20 categories of applications. Application monitoring sites had claimed the company had passed the 100,000 app mark earlier, but this is the first official confirmation from Apple.

“The App Store, now with over 100,000 applications available, is clearly a major differentiator for millions of iPhone and iPod touch customers around the world,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing. “The iPhone SDK created the first great platform for mobile applications and our customers are loving all of the amazing apps our developers are creating.”

“The App Store has forever changed the mobile gaming industry and continues to improve,” said Travis Boatman, vice president of Worldwide Studios, EA Mobile. “With a global reach of over 50 million iPhone and iPod touch users, the App Store has allowed us to develop high quality EA games that have been a huge success with customers.”

“With 10,000 downloads a day, worldwide customer response to our I Am T-Pain App has exceeded our wildest expectations,” said Jeff Smith, CEO of Smule. “The App Store has given us a unique opportunity to create and grow a very successful business, and we’re looking forward to an exciting future.”

AT&T files suit against Verizon over “map for that” ads

AT&T has filed a lawsuit against Verizon Wireless over its recent TV advertisement campaign comparing the two leading carriers’ 3G network coverage map. As we reported early last month, the ads ape Apple’s “there’s an app for that” iPhone slogan by repeating “there’s a map for that” while showing various usage scenarios in which Verizon’s 3G coverage might better that of AT&T’s. The Wall Street Journal reports that AT&T is claiming that Verizon is misleading consumers with the ads, by using maps with large amounts of blank space which AT&T says indicate a complete lack of coverage, not just a lack of 3G. “By communicating that AT&T customers have no coverage in large parts of the country, Verizon is misleading the public about an essential component of the services AT&T offers,” the suit reads.  Verizon is claiming the lawsuit is without merit. “Our ads clearly explain that non-3G coverage is available elsewhere,” Verizon spokesman Jim Gerace told the WSJ. “I think it’s interesting that AT&T’s chose to focus on the white areas and not the blues area of their map. We think it calls into question their own fastest 3G claim as the map clearly shows where 3G doesn’t exist.”

App Mix: Chorus, Kodak, Highlights, WSOP

EnvIO networks has released Chorus, its first application for the iPhone and iPod touch. Chorus is a application discovery app, helping users find worthwhile applications on the App Store without the need to dig through the store itself. The application bases its recommendations on those of the user’s friends—which can be brought in from Facebook and Contacts, and added from a list of nearby Chorus users—as well as a select group of “App Maven” experts. Chorus is available now as a free download from the App Store.

Kodak has introduced its new Pic Flick application for the iPhone and iPod touch. Kodak Pic Flick allows users to wirelessly transmit pictures from their devices to Kodak EasyShare W820 or W1020 wireless digital picture froms, or to a Kodak ESP 5250 All-In-One wireless printer for printing out the image. Kodak Pic Flick is a free download from the App Store. [via Photography Blog]

Highlights for Children has debuted Highlights Hidden Pictures, its first game for the iPhone and iPod touch. The game features eight puzzle illustrations featuring more than 100 hidden objects, a scrollable row of objects to use as clues, a hint feature, the ability to register the game for two free puzzles, the ability to play custom music in the background, and more. Highlights Hidden Puzzles is available now and sells for $2.

GLU Mobile has released World Series of Poker Hold’em Legend, its latest game for the iPhone and iPod touch. This No-Limit Texas hold’em poker game features a career mode with cash games, bracelet events, multi-table tournaments, and more, over 20 unique achievements, up to 9-player real-time online multiplayer, a heads-up two-player Bluetooth multiplayer mode, the ability to save favorite hands, the ability to listen to music from the iPod while playing, and more. World Series of Poker Hold’em Legend is available now and is priced at $7.

Brothers intros Wall of Sound iPod speaker system

Swedish audio company Brothers has introduced its new Wall of Sound (WOS) iPod speaker system. Hailed by the company as “the most powerful iPod speaker on the market,” the WOS is powered by a 125 Watt, built-in tube amplifier. It features a total of 28 driver elements, each of which has its own handcrafted box for a more balanced sound. Other features include a frequency response of 40 Hz-20,000 kHz, dimensions of roughly 37” x 49” x 12”, and a weight of approximately 225 lbs. Available exclusively at Brothers’ flagship store in Stockholm, the Wall of Sound is priced at $4,495.

Hacker targets jailbroken iPhones in extortion ploy

A Dutch hacker has used an exploit commonly left open when jailbreaking an iPhone or iPod touch to try and extort €5 from a number of T-Mobile Netherlands users. Ars Technica reports that the hacker used port scanning to identify jailbroken iPhones on the network that had SSH running. As many users who had activated SSH had not changed the default root password, the hacker was able to hack into the devices and send an alert that appeared on the screen like an incoming SMS message. The false alert read, “Your iPhone’s been hacked because it’s really insecure! Please visit and secure your iPhone right now! Right now, I can access all your files. This message won’t disappear until your iPhone’s secure.”

A visit to the website mentioned in the alert prompts the user to send €5 to a PayPal account, after which time the hacker will send the user an email with instructions to remove the hack. Ars notes that the hacker doesn’t appear to have malicious intent, as he/she states on the page mentioned in the alert that,” If you don’t pay, it’s fine by me. But remember, the way I got access to your iPhone can be used by thousands of others—they can send text messages from your number (like I did), use it to call or record your calls, and actually whatever they want, even use it for their hacking activities! I can assure you, I have no intention of harming you or whatever, but, some hackers do! It’s just my advice to secure your phone.” Apple has often mentioned security issues as a reason why it is opposed to users jailbreaking their devices.

China Unicom: 5K iPhones sold in first 5 days

China Unicom has announced that it has signed up only 5,000 new iPhone subscribers in the first five days the device has been on sale, but adding it was satisfied with the results. Unicom Chairman Chang Xiaobing said that the company is “satisfied with iPhone sales so far,” and added that the launch would help boost revenue in the fourth quarter, without providing any additional details. Reuters reports that analysts expect Unicom may be forced to offer more subsidies on the iPhone to bring down its price and boost sales. China Unicom became the first carrier to offer the iPhone in mainland China when it launched the device October 30.

App Mix: Eliminate, Command & Conquer, Doom, IzyPhotoTip

Ngmoco has released Eliminate Pro, its latest game for the iPhone and iPod touch. Eliminate Pro is a first-person shooter in which players compete with one another in multi-player matches to earn credits to buy upgrades and better weapons. Features include networked play over both 3G and W-Fi, multiple weapons, power-ups, and arenas, Plus+ integration, and more. Eliminate Pro is available now as a free download from the App Store.

Electronic Arts has introduced Command & Conquer Red Alert, its latest title for the iPhone and iPod touch. In Red Alert, players use multi-touch controls to command their forces against the enemy, fighting through twelve combat levels as either the Soviets or Allies—each side has its own specific weaponry and campaign storylines. A map pack with six extra skirmish maps is available as an in-app purchase, and EA is promising Bluetooth and Wi-Fi multiplayer, as well as an “Empire of the Rising Sun” expansion pack as future updates. Command & Conquer Red Alert is available now and sells for $10.

id Software has unveiled Doom Classic, its latest game for the iPhone and iPod touch. As a port of the original first-person shooter, Classic includes the original three episodes as well as episode four for a total of 36 levels, customizable control schemes, both Deathmatch and Co-op multiplayer modes, the ability to listen to the original soundtrack or music from the iPod library, and more. Doom Classic is available now for $7.

Izy CG has released IzyPhotoTip, its latest application for the iPhone and iPod touch. IzyPhotoTip is designed to help photographers and travelers mark, locate, and revisit places where they might want to take a picture with more advanced photographic equipment. Features include the ability to manage, categorize, and tags shooting locations, add photos from the camera or library to a location, save the best time to shoot the location, share locations with friends, and more. IzyPhotoTip is available now and is priced at $4.

Apple pitching $30 iTunes subscription to TV networks?

Apple is attempting to sell TV networks on a $30 monthly iTunes subscription plan for launch as soon as early next year, according to a new report. Citing multiple anonymous sources, AllThingsD claims that the company is trying to gain support for a possible monthly subscription service, which would be tied to iTunes, instead of a particular piece of hardware, meaning it could potentially be rolled out across multiple devices, including the iPod, iPhone, and Apple TV. The report claims that Eddy Cue, Apple’s vice president of Internet Services, has been promoting the idea to industry executives, who, while intrigued with the idea, are also wary of straining relationships with cable providers.

Buyers’ Guide Sneak Peeks: V-Moda Crossfade headphones, more

Alongside the previously mentioned JBL Creature III speakers and other accessories, another major product debuting in our 2010 iPod + iPhone Buyers’ Guide is V-Moda’s new Crossfade headphones. Designed and aimed to compete with Monster’s Beats by Dr. Dre headphones, the Crossfades will be available in both Over- and On-Ear versions, with 50mm drivers in one and 40mm drivers in the other. Other features will include an included carrying case, swappable cables, and four available colors. Expect the Crossfades in December with a price tag of $200.

imageIvySkin is showing off its upcoming SmartCase for the iPhone 3G/3GS in the Sneak Peeks section; the Quattro-T4-based case will offer a 1500mAh battery on the rear, along with power indicator lights, a USB port to allow for charging of both the iPhone and SmartCase at the same time, and a button to switch the port into an iPhone sync mode. Expect it later this month for $80; the company is also working on a similar KeyPal case, which will add a hardware keyboard to the iPhone 3G/3GS as opposed to a battery. Finally, Griffin is debuting its Travel Stand for iPhone + iPod, a folding, portable video stand featuring an included cord manager and a flip-up video stand compatible with any iPhone, iPod touch, or fourth- or fifth-generation iPod nano; expect it in Wal-Mart stores for $15 later this month. For more information on these and thousands of other products for the iPod and iPhone, check out our 2010 iPod + iPhone Buyers’ Guide.

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