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Angry Birds adds new levels, more rare gems

A new minor update to Angry Birds has been released adding support for fifteen new underground levels for the Mine and Dine episode and the addition of more collectible jewels. Debuted last month, the Mine and Dine feature brings the Angry Birds underground to chase the evil piggies out of their cavernous hiding places. The original Mine and Dine release included 15 levels and introduced rare collectible gems; the recent update adds an additional fifteen levels and more gems to the experience. Angry Birds for the iPhone and iPod touch is available from the App Store for $1; Angry Birds HD for the iPad is available separately for $5.

iSSH adds RDP support

Zinger-Soft has released an update to iSSH, its remote SSH and desktop client for iOS devices, adding support for the Windows Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) and several UI improvements. iSSH is a universal app that allows iPhone, iPod touch and iPad users to remotely access Mac, Windows and Linux computers as well as a variety of terminals using the SSH and Telnet protocols along with an integrated tunnelled remote desktop client support VNC, X server and now RDP. The addition of RDP support allows iSSH to be used to connect with and remote control Windows PCs using the standard built-in remote desktop capabilities without the need for additional software to be installed on the PC. The new version also allows users to create entries and connect using SSH, VNC and RDP URIs and improves Bluetooth keyboard support. iSSH 5.0 is a universal app and is available from the App Store for $10.

HTC open to negotiations with Apple

HTC has said it’s willing to negotiate a settlement with Apple after both parties received favorable judgements from the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) in their various ongoing patent disputes, Bloomberg reports. “We have to sit down and figure it out,” said HTC CFO Winston Yung. “We’re open to having discussions.” HTC recently purchased S3 Graphics less than a week after the ITC ruled that Apple was in violation of two of its patents; the ITC later ruled that HTC was in violation of two Apple patents related to data detection and transmission technologies. “We are open to all sorts of solutions, as long as the solution and the terms are fair and reasonable,” Yung said. “On and off we’ve had discussions with Apple, even before the initial determination came out,” he added, noting that he was unaware of any talks between the two companies since the two rulings were announced.

Twelve South intros BookBook for iPhone 4


Twelve South has introduced its new BookBook case for the iPhone 4. Like the company’s prior BookBook cases, the BookBook for iPhone 4 is designed to look like an actual book, featuring a handmade leather case with hard-back covers on the front and back, open access to all ports and controls, interior wallet pockets for ID, cards, and cash, and a quick tab for sliding up the phone and exposing the rear camera and flash. Twelve South’s BookBook for iPhone 4 is available now and sells for $60.

TPK to supply bulk of next-gen iPhone touch panels?

Taiwan-based TPK Holdings is expected to supply between 70 and 80 percent of the touch panels used in the next-generation iPhone, according to a new report. Citing unnamed industry insiders, the Taiwan Economic News reports that TPK offers Apple a yield rate of 92-93 percent in production of touch panels, and is described as the only manufacturer that can churn out the necessary quantity of products while guaranteeing consistent quality. Notably, the next-generation iPhone is referred to in the report as the “iPhone 4S,” although it is unclear whether this is based on inside information or prior speculation; also absent from the report is a mention of what size the touch panels supplied by TPK would be. [via BGR]

Libratone unveils Lounge, Live AirPlay speakers


Libratone has unveiled two new upcoming AirPlay-compatible speaker systems, the Lounge and the Live. The Lounge is designed to work with a TV or home entertainment system thanks to its thin, long body, and features five dedicated amplifiers for up to 150W output, a DSP unit, an eight-inch inverted woofer, two four-inch ceramic midrange drivers, and two one-inch ribbon-based tweeters, a 3.5mm minijack input with optical digital support, FullRoom technology that lets the tweeters and midrange drivers disperse sound both forwards and sideways to provide 360 degree sound, a cashmere wool exterior finish, and compatibility with a dedicated app that lets users adjust the sound via Wi-Fi while playing music over AirPlay. The Libratone Lounge will be available in September and will sell for $1,299.

The Libratone Live is instead very similar in design to the company’s prior Beat wireless speaker, but, like the Lounge, offers AirPlay compatibility, a optical-capable 3.5mm input, 150W of total power thanks to five dedicated amplifiers, a built-in DSP unit, FullRoom acoustic technology, one five-inch bass driver, two three-inch midrange drivers, and two one-inch ribbon-based tweeters. Libratone’s Live system will also be available in September and will sell for $699.

Native iPad support discovered in Facebook app

TechCrunch has discovered code within the official Facebook app for the iPhone and iPod touch suggesting that a universal version of the app with native iPad support may be coming soon. The report further notes that the iPad code is operational and with a bit of hacking the app can be forced to run on an iPad using the new native iPad interface, although Facebook has since blocked access when using the app in iPad mode. A gallery of images from the Facebook app running in iPad can be found at TechCrunch.

AT&T preparing for early September iPhone launch?

AT&T has started internal communication of its launch plans for Apple’s next-generation iPhone, according to ta new report. Citing a proven source, BGR reports that it has told employees across the company, including those working in retail locations, to finish any current employee training as soon as possible in order to have as much staff as possible available to handle the increase of foot traffic expected in September. The report goes on to say that Apple is expected to announce the next-generation iPhone at the end of August with an official launch to follow in the first half of September.

Kindle for iOS adds newspaper and magazine support

Amazon has released an update to its Kindle app for iOS devices adding newspaper and magazine support and removing direct access to the Kindle Store from within the app. Kindle 2.8 allows users to read over 100 newspapers and magazines on the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad complete with high resolution colour images. Users can purchase individual newspaper and magazine issues from the Kindle Store or subscribe to have each edition delivered automatically. Recent newspaper and magazine editions from subscriptions or recent purchases can also be downloaded from the Archived items section. The new version also introduces integration with Facebook and Twitter allowing users to share quotes and passages from what they’re reading. Notably, with this latest update the Kindle Store button has also been removed from within the app in order to comply with Apple’s new policies on in-app purchases and subscriptions. Kindle for iOS devices is a universal app and is available from the App Store as a free download.

Booq debuts Viper slider for iPad 2

Booq Bags has debuted its new Viper slider case for the iPad 2. Made from hard polycarbonate, the Viper features a black leatherette exterior, a soft fabric inner lining to prevent scratches, open access to all ports, controls, and cameras, and a two-piece design with a slide-off bottom for use with docking stations. Booq’s new Viper slider case for the iPad 2 is available now and sells for $40.

Apple releases iOS 4.3.5 for iPhone, iPad, iPod touch

Apple today released iOS 4.3.5 for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. According to Apple’s release notes, the update “fixes a security vulnerability with certificate validation.” A separate update is available for the CDMA iPhone and is listed as iOS 4.2.10. [via Mac Rumors]

Griffin ships StompBox foot controller for iOS


Griffin Technology has announced that it is now shipping its StompBox foot controller for iOS devices. Designed to work with Frontier Design’s free iShred Live app, StompBox connects to the device via a 30-pin cable and features four assignable foot-activated switches to allow for foot-based control of various effects. Also included is the Griffin GuitarConnect cable to allow for connection of instruments, headphones, and the iOS device. Griffin’s StompBox foot controller for iOS is available now and sells for $100.

Apple airs new iPad 2 ad ‘We’ll Always’


Apple has started to air its latest TV commercial for the iPad 2. Entitled “We’ll Always,”  the 30-second advertisement is similar in tone to the company’s prior iPad 2 commercials, and features a voiceover by Peter Coyote which states, “We’ll never stop sharing our memories, or getting lost in a good book. We’ll always cook dinner, and cheer for our favorite team. We’ll still go to meetings, make home movies, and learn new things. But how we do all this will never be the same.” The new commercial is available for viewing on Apple’s website.

Apple launches App Store in 33 new countries

Apple has launched the App Store in 33 new territories, bringing the total number of countries in which it is available to over 100. The new countries are, in alphabetical order, Algeria, Angola, Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, British Virgin Islands, Brunei, Cayman Islands, Cyprus, Dominica, Ghana, Grenada, Guyana, Iceland, Montserrat, Nigeria, Oman, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and The Grenadines, Suriname, Tanzania, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos, Uzbekistan, and Yemen.

Apple releases iOS 5 beta 4

Apple has released its fourth beta version of iOS 5. Available to paid iOS developers, the release—listed as build 9A5274d—is accompanied by matching beta versions of the iOS 5 SDK, iTunes 10.5 and Apple TV Software. It is unclear what major changes, if any, may be present in the new version. iOS 5 beta 4 is available now to paid iOS developers from the iOS Dev Center.

Update: 9 to 5 Mac reports that the update can be installed on devices running iOS 5 beta 3 via the over-the-air software update feature found within the Settings app.

T-Mobile USA offering Micro SIMs for iPhone 4

T-Mobile USA is now officially offering iPhone 4-compatible Micro SIM cards for use on its network. As stated on the company’s website, the offering is for customers that already have a GSM phone or iPhone they need to activate, or an unlocked GSM phone they would like to use on the T-Mobile network. The card is free with a 2 year contract, and appears to sell for $10 to those who don’t wish to sign a long-term service plan. Notably, T-Mobile stated last month that it now has over one million active iPhones on its network. [via 9 to 5 Mac]

2K Games releases Sid Meier’s Pirates for iPad

2K Games has released an iPad version of the classic high-seas adventure game Sid Meier’s Pirates. Pirates for iPad puts the player at the helm of one of 27 fully customizable ships where they must travel to various ports of call, build a crew of seafaring bandits and journey out on a quest for treasure and adventure. Re-designed specifically to take advantage of the iPad touchscreen, Pirates allows users to engage in activities ranging from sea battles to sword fights with intuitive touch controls to parry, counter and duel and challenge and pursue some of the most famous pirates from history. The game also includes enhanced features for iPad 2 users such as the ability to take your own character photo with the built-in camera and improved graphics and visual effects. Sid Meier’s Pirates for iPad requires iOS 4.2 or later and is available from the App Store for $4. app adds location-based transaction entry

Popular online finance service has released an update to its iOS application adding the much requested ability to enter transactions directly into the app. The app for the iPhone and iPod touch previously only allowed users to view their transactions from the web site—new transactions had to be entered either via the web or downloaded as part of an online statement. The new feature will allow users to more easily enter cash transactions and pending expenses such as checks and credit/debit card transactions that have no yet cleared, improving budget tracking and saving users the trouble of having to sift through their receipts when they get back to their computer.

The update has also added geo-location capabilities integrated with Google Places to help match entered transactions to the point of purchase; users can simply open the app to register recent spending and choose a merchant from those found nearby. Debit and credit card transactions can be assigned to the appropriate account while cash transactions are automatically deducted from the most recent ATM withdrawal. Users can also now more easily view available and current balances along with pending transactions for each account directly from the iOS app. Personal Finance requires iOS 4.0 or later and is available from the App Store as a free download. A free account is required to use the app.

White iPod touch front panel pictured online?


Photographs purportedly showing white front panels for a next-generation iPod touch have been posted online. 9 to 5 Mac reports that the pieces are supposedly digitizer components, based on information received from the iFixYouri repair shop, and appear to be for the fourth-generation model, with two holes for the FaceTime camera and front sensors, respectively. The report notes that the parts could be for a cancelled white 4G model, or parts for a yet-unannounced fifth-generation unit. Notably, Apple executives have previously revealed that work on the long-delayed iPhone 4 helped the company in other areas, and the company has since introduced a white iPad 2, leaving the iPod touch as the only iOS device note available in a white variant.

Verizon activates 2.3 million iPhones in Q2 2011

Verizon Wireless has revealed that it activated 2.3 million iPhones during its second quarter. Boy Genius Report notes that this is only slightly up from the 2.2 million iPhones it activated in the first quarter, during which the device was only available for seven weeks. Notably, rival carrier AT&T said it activated 3.6 million iPhones during the June quarter, but it also has the advantage of offering two iPhone models—the iPhone 4 and less expensive iPhone 3GS—compared to Verizon, which offers the iPhone 4 only.

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