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Gameloft previews Assassin’s Creed for iPhone, iPod touch

Gameloft has released details of its upcoming Assassin’s Creed game for the iPhone and iPod touch. A direct prequel to the console game of the same name, Assassin’s Creed puts players in control of a master assassin named Altair, sent to Jerusalem in the year 1191 AD to steal a chalice in order to end the Crusades. The game offers a mix of stealth, problem solving, and action, and features skill-based mini-games, cinematic cutscenes, the ability to upgrade Altair and his six different weapons, and 3D graphics. Assassin’s Creed for the iPhone and iPod touch is expected to launch next week; pricing has yet to be announced. Continue reading for more screenshots.

Utah State Government launches two iPhone apps

Utah.gov, the official website of the state of Utah, has released two new applications for the iPhone and iPod touch to allow users to quickly and easily access various state agency information. The Utah.gov application provides users with a state agency search, including phone number, address, and web site URL, a service search, covering over 1,000 citizen, business, and government-to-government services, and a section for news from Utah.gov. The second app, Utah.gov Professional License Lookup, is a search utility that lets users verify the status of individuals with a state regulated occupation or profession, including doctors, nurses, contractors, accountants, and other state licensed professionals. It displays basic license information, and color-coded results based on active, inactive, or suspended status. Both of Utah.gov’s applications are available now as free downloads from the App Store.

LeapFrog releases Number Rumble for iPhone, iPod touch

Educational gaming company LeapFrog has released Number Rumble, the company’s first game for the iPhone and the iPod touch. Number Rumble is a math game aimed at six- to ten-year-olds that helps players learn basic math, including addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division using numbers 1-12. It features three different game modes, including “Learn It,” in which players choose an operation, spin number wheels to create a math problem, and then tap the equals sign to see and hear the answer, “Quiz Time,” in which players spin the number wheels to create a problem and then shake the iPhone to select an answer, and “Random Quiz,” which lets players practice all four operations at once by shaking the iPhone to see fill-in-the-blank-style questions. LeapFrog’s Number Rumble is available now from the App Store and sells for $3.

App Mix: Yelp Update, 2-Page Browsers, Postcard Mailers

Yelp has announced an upcoming update to its same-named iPhone application, reviewed yesterday, which currently offers restaurant reviews and a restaurant finder feature. According to a company spokesman, the new Yelp version will let iPhone users “write Twitter-length ‘quick tips’ about a business, draft full reviews, browse a Facebook-style feed of reviews, tips, photos and events” either nearby or authored by friends, as well as adding U.K. support, a large photo browser, and account creation directly from the iPhone. A video of the new Yelp version, which is expected to become available in the App Store in the next day or so, can be viewed here.

Two separate developers have released what one bills as the “first dual web browser for iPhone,” both under similar names, enabling a user to look at two web pages at once. Michal Wagner/7sql’s iBrowseTwo 1.0 divides the vertical-orientation iPhone screen into upper and lower portions, with a bar dividing the two web pages and capable of being moved to let you see more of one or the other. BIG Development’s iBrowse2 1.0 divides the widescreen-orientation screen into two halves, left and right, placing pages on both sides and letting you switch into single-page vertical mode at will. Each app sells for $1.

Direct-from-iPhone postcard-creating applications have appeared in the App Store, including the $2 CardPuppy from Wildcat Mobile and the free app Postcards from Stolen Bases. Both applications let you use iPhone photo gallery images to instantly upload and create actual mailable postcards, complete with text and addresses you enter, which are sent via the developers to recipients of your choice. While CardPuppy comes with a credit good for one postcard, selling additional credits via PayPal for $2.50 and up, Postcards gives you two cards for free and then charges $1.30 and up for additional cards, depending on quantity. Both are available now.

Yahoo! launches Messenger app for iPhone, iPod touch

Yahoo! has released its new Yahoo! Messenger application for the iPhone and iPod touch. The application allows users to login to Yahoo’s messaging service, set their status with custom status messages, view recent conversations, and share photos. In addition, it offers an automatic idle mode that changes users’ statuses to idle upon leaving the application, giving them ten minutes to return to the app without missing any messages. Yahoo! Messenger is available now as a free download from the App Store.

Namco releases Galaga Remix for iPhone, iPod touch

Namco has released Galaga Remix, its latest game for the iPhone and iPod touch. The game includes both the arcade classic Galaga and an enhanced Remix version, featuring six unique boss battles, nine different power-ups, new background images, an updated dual-fighter mode, and a new free play mode that lets players choose from previously-cleared stages. Galaga Remix also offers three control modes, including on-screen arrow keys, a slider bar, and accelerometer control. Galaga Remix is available now from the App Store and sells for $6; a free lite version is available as well. Continue reading for more screenshots.

Orange France launches iPhone TV application

France’s iPhone carrier Orange has released a new application (Translated Link) that allows French users to watch TV on their devices. The Orange TV application is available for free from the App Store, but downloaders must pay separately to use the app, via either a €6-€9 monthly charge, or €.90 per 20-minute session. Between 20 and 64 channels are available, depending on the user’s plan; curiously, the app works over EDGE or 3G connections, but not over Wi-Fi due to TV channel concerns. According to MacGeneration, the app will be followed tomorrow by a version from competing carrier SFR, and Bouygues Telecom may also offer a similar application when it begins sales of the iPhone. YouTube videos of Orange TV in action are available in the MacGeneration article.

Coldplay Teams with Tapulous for Tap Tap Coldplay

Tapulous has released Tap Tap Coldplay (aka Tap Tap Revenge: Coldplay Edition), the latest in its series of Tap Tap rhythm games for the iPhone and iPod touch. Tap Tap Revenge: Coldplay Edition includes ten songs from the Grammy-winning English band, including “Yellow,” “Clocks,” and “Lost,” plus remixed versions of Lovers in Japan and Viva la Vida. The game also features new themes, graphics, and effects inspired by the band’s music videos, four difficulty levels, each with unlockable boss tracks, a multi-player mode, and Facebook Connect high score tracking. Tap Tap Revenge: Coldplay Edition is available now from the App Store and sells for $5.

For more information on Tap Tap Coldplay, see our review.

Illusion Labs demos iPhone games on Multi-touch table

iPhone developer Illusion Labs has posted a video to YouTube showing two of its iPhone games, TouchGrind and Sway, being played on a large multi-touch table. The technology for table was developed by Touchtech in cooperation with Crowd; according to Mac Rumors, the games, which had been slightly modified to accommodate the larger screen, were running on a MacBook Pro with input from the table being sent via a network cable. Continue reading to watch an embedded version of the video.

Jeopardy! comes to iPhone, iPod touch

Sony Pictures Television has released its new Jeopardy! game for the iPhone and iPod touch. Based on the popular quiz show of the same name, Jeopardy! lets players compete against two computer opponents, with the same gameplay as seen on the television show. Features include the ability for players to write their names on the podium using the touchscreen, a landscape view for showing both the contestants and categories at once, real sound effects from the game show including the Final Jeopardy theme, the ability for players to create their own custom contestants, and over 1,500 clues. Jeopardy! is available now from the App Store and sells for $5.

Apple updates Remote to version 1.2.1

Apple has released Remote 1.2.1, the latest version of its iTunes and Apple TV remote software for the iPhone and iPod touch. According to Apple, the new release contains bug fixes and provides compatibility with iTunes 8.1; however, this is the same “What’s New” description it used for Remote 1.2, making it difficult to ascertain what changes have been made. Remote v.1.2 added the ability for guests to select songs to add to the iTunes DJ playlist, and vote for songs picked by others. Remote 1.2.1 is available now as a free download from the App Store.

T-Mobile Germany moves to ban Skype for iPhone

T-Mobile Germany, the exclusive carrier of the iPhone in Germany, has said it will block customers from using the new Skype application for iPhone, both on a network and contractual basis. “It is clearly stated in our customer contracts that such services may not be used,” T-Mobile spokesperson Alexander von Schmettow told German publication The Local. “There are two reasons for this – because the high level of traffic would hinder our network performance, and because if the Skype programme didn’t work properly, customers would make us responsible for it.” Skype for iPhone works only over Wi-Fi connections, meaning it would have no effect on T-Mobile cellular network performance, only at company-owned Wi-Fi hotspots. Skype General Counsel Robert Miller points out in a blog post that the application is the number one download on the App Store in Germany, but that customers in the country have no choice but to abide by the company’s rules, at least while on T-Mobile controlled networks, because all German mobile operators forbid the use of VoIP applications.

“[T]here is no technical justification for this arbitrary blocking of Skype, and it represents a barrier to online business put in place by a private company just because they can, because they control access to the Internet,” Miller writes. “Yet, no one can do anything about it: German or EU regulation does not forbid such blatantly unfair practices, and the new EU legislation for telecoms which the European Parliament and European governments are supposed to adopt later this month will not help either, it seems from the latest texts being considered in Brussels: it may even make things worse, by legitimizing restrictions put in place by operators to users’ Internet access, as long as they inform consumers.” Meanwhile, Schmettow said the company will not hesitate to enforce the policy, stating, “[T]hose who violate their contracts can expect to have them cancelled. It’s the same with any contract. If you rent a no-pets apartment and expect no one to notice your little dog, you can’t be surprised when your landlord comes knocking.”

Sony announces slate of 2009 iPhone games

Sony Pictures Television has announced three new iPhone and iPod touch games slated for release in 2009. Based on the upcoming console game, Ghostbusters will let users catch ghosts and save NYC citizens from being slimed when it is released in June. Q*Bert is an update of the classic arcade game, featuring new graphics and maps, animations, 50 new levels, and the retro arcade game. It will launch in July. Finally, players will create their own spy in Top Agent, a multi-player game that pits users against henchmen, famous villains from the James Bond films, and other players’ agents. It is expected to be released in August.

DirecTV intros official iPhone, iPod touch app

DirecTV has introduced its new application for the iPhone and iPod touch. The app lets users search for any television show up to 14 days in advance, browse programs by channel or date + time, access detailed program information, set their DirecTV boxes to record shows by single episode or series, program Pay Per View movies to be recorded, and record to any DirecTV DVR in their home. Available now as a free download, DirecTV’s browsing functionality is available for all users, while its DVR features are available to DirecTV customers only.

TNA Wrestling comes to iPhone, iPod touch

Total Nonstop Action (TNA) Wrestling has released its TNA Wrestling game for the iPhone and iPod touch. Developed by Longtail Studios, the game revolves around a story mode, in which players create their own wrestler, with the goal of making it from unsigned rookie to TNA World Champion. Along the way, players will wrestle against 15 different TNA stars, unlocking new moves, creating rivalries, making decisions outside of the ring that will effect future matches, and participating in various match types including tag team, gauntlet, iron man, and lumberjack events. TNA Wrestling is available now from the App Store and sells for $5; continue reading for more screenshots.

MLB releases sequel to At Bat iPhone app

Major League Baseball has released MLB.com At Bat 2009 for iPhone and iPod touch, a new version of its app of the same name that was released last year. At Bat 2009 offers users the ability to view real-time box scores, play-by-play and video highlights, and pitch type, location, and speed data from MLB.com Gameday. New for 2009, the app also gives users access to MLB.com Gameday Audio, letting users listen to every regular season and postseason game live, with a choice between the home or visiting team’s announcers. MLB.com At Bat 2009 is available now from the App Store and sells for $10.

Skype for iPhone launching tomorrow

VoIP provider Skype has announced plans to launch an official application for iPhone and iPod touch. The app will allow users to make free calls to other Skype users over Wi-Fi; calls to normal landline phones will be charged to the users’ Skype accounts. The app will also feature integration with the iPhone’s built-in Address Book, support for Skype chat over Wi-Fi or cellular networks, a call history screen, and support for the iPod touch 2G. Skype for iPhone and iPod touch will be available tomorrow as a free download from the App Store.

Capcom releases Mega Man II for iPhone, iPod touch

Capcom has released a port of its Mega Man II game for the iPhone and iPod touch. Originally appearing on the NES, the game features fourteen levels, nine different bosses—each with a unique weapon—on-screen, arcade-style controls, and “rebalanced gameplay” optimized for the iPhone. In early testing, the game appears to be a nearly direct port of the original, except with poor controls. Mega Man II is available now for the iPhone and iPod touch and sells for $5.

Amidio intros Star Guitar for iPhone, iPod touch

Amidio, maker of the Noise.io Pro synthesizer application, has released Star Guitar, its new guitar and voice recording application for the iPhone and iPod touch. Unlike other virtual guitar applications which rely on a simulation-style interface, with small strings to tap and strum, Star Guitar presents users with a pad of chord buttons, allowing them to play the instrument with their thumbs. Three guitars are offered, with more coming in updates, and users can play chords via the manual SmartStrumming mode or by relying on one the more than 13 rhythm patterns, each with A and B variations for chorus/verse. In addition, the app can be set to record the guitar alongside the user’s vocals, saving the files in the .WAV format, which can then be accessed via a built-in web server over Wi-Fi. A YouTube demo video is available for viewing. Star Guitar is available now from the App Store and sells for $4.

EA reveals slew of upcoming iPhone titles

EA Mobile has announced additions to its lineup of upcoming titles for the iPhone and iPod touch. Joining the already promised Tiger Woods PGA Tour Golf, Need for Speed Underground, The Sims 3, and Wolfenstein RPG as 2009 releases are FIFA Soccer, Madden NFL Football, NBA Live Basketball, Spore Creatures, Mystery Mania, SSX Snowboarding, Connect Four, Battleship, RISK, Monopoly Classic, Clue, American Idol, and Command & Conquer. In addition, the company disclosed that it has released an update to its Scrabble game for iPhone, enabling users to play against friends using the Facebook Connect feature.

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