ModulR, Inc. has introduced its new modulR iPad case. The modulR case is made from soft-touch elastic polymer covering a strong thermoplastic shell, and features a detachable screen cover, a textured rear surface for added grip, and four round accessory bumpers on the rear. These bumpers allow it to securely attach to a host of accessories, including a wall mount, kickstand, shoulder strap, and car mount. The modulR case for the Apple iPad is expected to be available this summer; pricing has yet to be announced.
Just Mobile has announced availability of its Lounge and XtandGo accessories for the iPod and iPhone. Lounge is an aluminum desktop and dashboard stand featuring a rotating, padded mount for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS, non-slip feet, and an included car kit for secure mounting. The Just Mobile Lounge sells for $60. Winner of a 2010 iLounge Best of Show award, the XtandGo is a windshield and dashboard mount offering a unique adjustable mounting arm, an included iPhone 3G/3GS holder, “Go buttons” for securing other devices to the XtandGo, and a choice between suction cup or glue-free sticker bases. XtandGo is priced at $40. Just Mobile’s new accessories for the iPod and iPhone are available now at mygearstore.com; for more information see our reviews of the XtandGo and Lounge.
Foursquare has released an update to its popular location-based social networking application for the iPhone and iPod touch. Sporting a completely redesigned user interface, the update also provides a more efficient checkin process, category support in the “Places” view and a pull-down-to-refresh option. Users can also now view a history of where they’ve been, and locations now display category icons and more detailed address information. Foursquare is available from the App Store as a free download.
Apple’s relatively new iTunes LP digital album format wasn’t originally proposed by the company, and has yet to significantly boost album sales, according to a new report. Citing anonymous industry sources, GigaOM reports that the format was in fact a result of the same negotiations between Apple and the major music labels that led to DRM-free songs and flexible pricing on the iTunes Store; a “concession” from Apple to make a gesture in favor of album sales as customers increasingly show interest in digital singles. According to the report, Apple subsidized the initial lineup of iTunes LP offerings, spending as much as $60,000 a piece to have the necessary media created by a third-party developer. The new format has failed to have any major impact on record sales, the report states, although there are less than 50 albums available in the format on the iTunes Store. One person involved in a prior iTunes LP project said “if it costs $50,000 or $60,000, we’re not going to do it again,” adding that Apple’s extra promotion of the album in conjunction with iTunes LP did help sales. Apple introduced the iTunes LP format in September 2009 alongside a new version of iTunes and a revamped interface for the iTunes Store.
Thing Labs, developer of the Brizzly.com online Twitter and Facebook reader announced today that it has acquired the Birdfeed Twitter client from iPhone developer Buzz Andersen as the foundation for its new Brizzly for Twitter iPhone application. The original Birdfeed application has been removed from the App Store and the former home page for the app now simply displays an announcement from Brizzly informing users of the news and where to download the new Brizzly for Twitter application. The announcement notes that Birdfeed will continue to work for existing users but will no longer be supported or updated. The new Brizzly application provides support for multiple Twitter accounts, Twitter Lists, sharing of photos via Brizzly Pics or Flickr, saved searches, and integration with the Brizzly.com online reader. Brizzly for Twitter is available from the App Store as a free download.
iKit has introduced its new Dura Case for the Apple iPad. This hybrid case combines a hard shell plate with a soft-grip border to offer impact resistance and protection against scratches and dings. Features include a form-fitting design, open access to all ports and controls, and an included screen protector and cleaning kit. iKit’s new iPad Dura Case is now available for pre-order in clear or black and sells for $40.
An internal Verizon memo posted online by Engadget suggests the company sees the launch of the iPad as “an opportunity” to push its data service plans. The memo states that the 3G version of the iPad is $130 more than the Wi-Fi only model, plus the cost of 3G service, which comes “on an overloaded network with limited coverage.” As Engadget points out, however, unlimited iPad 3G data service on AT&T costs $30 per month with no contract, while 5GB of data on Verizon with a MiFi device runs $60/month on a two-year contract. Interestingly, the memo also states that the iPad will not be sold directly by AT&T, contradicting a rumor from last month that AT&T would be selling the 3G version of the iPad in its stores via a built-in display.
Unusual Studio has unveiled its new Embassy Series cases for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS. Available in ten different designs, the Embassy Series are thin hard-shell cases featuring original artwork printed onto the case using advanced printing technology. The cases also offer full access to all ports, controls, and the camera, and come with a screen protector. Interestingly, the cases are to be packed using a Blind Assortment method, meaning each customer will receive a same-looking box, and will only discover what design he/she received upon opening the package. Unusual Studio is currently looking for a distribution partner for its cases.
Capcom has released the highly anticipated Street Fighter IV for the iPhone and iPod touch. First announced last month, Street Fighter IV brings the popular console game to the iPhone and iPod touch with a user interface specifically redesigned for the touchscreen and the same visual style and artwork found in the current generation console game. Eight classic characters are available in the game, including Ryu, Ken, Chun Li, Able, Blanka, M. Bison, Dhalsim, Guile and Ken and the game provides seven different playing environments. Familiar moves such as Unique Attacks, Special Moves, Focus Attacks, Super Combos and Ultra Combos are all present, and the game provides a “Dojo” mode to introduce new players to the game’s moves and features. In addition to the standard single-player mode, players can choose to compete against other iPhone and iPod touch users over Bluetooth in a two-player head-to-head mode. Street Fighter IV is available on the App Store for $10.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has acquired a recent copy of Apple’s iPhone Developer Program License Agreement (PDF Link) and posted it online. Previously seen only by those applying to be a licensed iPhone developer, the EFF used the Freedom of Information Act to ask NASA, which distributes a free NASA App through the App Store, for a copy. Contained within the agreement is a section prohibiting developers from making any “public statements” about the terms of the agreement, as well as sections prohibiting reverse engineering of the iPhone OS, prohibiting developers from contributing to the development of jailbreaking and or unlocking solutions, and a clause saying that Apple can “revoke the digital certificate of [an application] at any time,” a feature of the iPhone OS that Apple has yet to invoke, but keeps available as a backup plan should malicious software manage to find its way onto the App Store and users’ iPhones and iPod touches.
This week’s featured photo is from our iPhones Around the World gallery, and shows an iPhone 3GS overlooking a snow-covered scene near Vanersborg, Sweden. To share your photos and to be considered for our Photo of the Week, you simply need to submit your own photo to one of our galleries. So get out there, take some pictures with your iPod or iPhone, and maybe your submission will be our next Photo of the Week!
Quirky has introduced its new Cloak case for the Apple iPad. The Cloak sports an office folder-like design and non-slip rubber construction, with plastic on the hinge mechanisms and support braces. The iPad slides into the case from the top, and is completely protected when the case is shut; the case can also be used to prop the iPad up on a flat surface by either folding back the front cover or using the plastic support brace located on the case’s inside cover. Quirky’s new Cloak case for the iPad is available for pre-order now in a variety of colors and sells for $36.
Apple has released the fourth beta version of its iPhone SDK 3.2 for iPad. First released in January following the introduction of the iPad, the SDK is tailored specifically to the device, including support for its 1024x768 resolution, other iPad-specific interface functions, and includes an iPad simulator application so developers can pre-test their apps in an environment similar to that of the final device. It is currently unclear what, if any, major changes were made in the updated version. The iPhone OS 3.2 SDK beta 4 for iPad is available now to registered iPhone developers through the iPhone Dev Center.
Elgato has announced its next-generation EyeTV Hybrid TV tuner stick for HDTV and analog TV. Hailed by the company as “America’s smallest TV tuner stick,” the new EyeTV Hybrid features an ultra-compact enclosure, a matte aluminum finish, a built-in USB connector, an analog/ATSC tuner, S-Video, Composite video, antenna, and stereo audio inputs, an IR remote control sensor for use with the included remote control, and included EyeTV 3 software for Mac. Notably, the new model does not offer the built-in FM radio tuner of the previous model. The next-generation Elgato EyeTV Hybrid is available now and sells for $150.
WaterField Designs has introduced its new Smart Case and Slip Case accessories for the Apple iPad. Joining the company’s previously announced Ultimate SleeveCase and iPad Suede Jacket, the Smart Case is a top-loading case featuring an impact-resistant plastic inner shell with light padding, leather accents on the sides, Ultrasuede lining for protection against scratches, a color fabric exterior, and a “powermesh” back pocket for accessories. The Slip Case is a simple sleeve-style case featuring a quick-access top opening, a piece of internal impact-resistant plastic for screen protection, Ultrasuede lining, a pull tab at the bottom to help with device removal, and a washable, water-resistant outer material for protection from moisture. WaterField Designs’ Smart Case and Slip Case for the iPad are available for pre-order now in a variety of colors and sell for $59 and $29, respectively.
Genera Mobile has released FORMULA 1 Live Racing 2010, an unofficial Formula 1 information app that allows F1 racing fans to follow Grand Prix racing on their iPhone or iPod touch. The application provides live commentary, lap-by-lap race positions, live coverage of qualification sessions and real-time leaderboards for all Grand Prix 2010 races. Users can also view detailed circuit information including weather conditions, view stats on the drivers competing in each race and receive daily F1 news updates between races. FORMULA 1 Live Racing 2010 is available on the App Store as a free download.
Jays has introduced its new a-Jays high-performance earphones. Available in three models, all a-Jays earphones feature an 8.6mm driver and flat, tangle-free TPE cords. The One model offers a sleek black finish, while the Two model sports a highly polished finish, a more bass-heavy sound signature, and an included stereo splitter and flight adapter. Finally, the Three model features a rubber coating, as well as titanium coated diaphragm (TCD) technology, a wider frequency range than the One or Two models, and an included stereo splitter, flight adapter and protective case. Jays’ a-Jays high-performance earphones will be available in April and will sell for $40-$60.
CBS Interactive has released a new app for iPhone and iPod touch users to follow the NCAA March Madness tournament games on their devices. NCAA March Madness on Demand provides live streaming video of every game of the tournament, available over both Wi-Fi and 3G/EDGE connections. The application also provides Westwood One live radio broadcasts of all games, video-on-demand highlights, game previews and current scores and headlines. Users can choose to receive alerts on their favorite teams and other events and can share comments via Facebook and Twitter from directly within the application. CBS Sports NCAA March Madness on Demand is available from the App Store for $10. A free Lite version is also available that provides scores, stats, news and video highlights but excludes live video and audio streaming.
Case-mate is now shipping its Hug protective case and charging pad solution for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS. The Hug consists of a two-piece hard plastic case featuring aluminum accents and open access to the headphone jack, power button, volume buttons, and ring/silent switch, and a desktop charging pad with an aluminum base. When placed on the charging pad, the Hug case begins charging the encased iPhone wirelessly, shutting off automatically when the battery is full. In addition, both the case and charging pad are based on the wireless power standard set by the Wireless Power Consortium, meaning that other compliant devices will be able to draw power from the charging pad or provide power to the case. Case-mate’s Hug case and charging mat for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS also includes a screen protection kit and is if available now for $100.
Electronic Arts has released the first new mega pack for its episodic Surviving High School game. “Homecoming Queen” casts the player in the role of a female student who must work on her popularity, dancing skills and find a date in order to become Homecoming Queen. While the original main game pack “Football Season” cast the player in the role of a male football player, the new add-on pack provides players with the opportunity to play in the first-person as a female character instead. Released last fall, Surviving High School is a choice-based role-playing game that is unique in its approach of providing free short weekly “episodes” using a TV-like model. The game includes a single full game pack, “Football Season” followed by shorter episodes released weekly that allow the player to follow various other characters and stories. New episodes are available for free each week with past episodes and new mega-packs sold as in-app purchases from within the game. Surviving High School is available on the App Store for $3, the Homecoming Queen Mega pack is $2 as an in-app purchase.