Brightkite has released an update to its social networking app for the iPhone and iPod touch, adding iOS 4 support and several other enhancements. Brightkite 2.8 now provides native iOS 4 support including Fast App Switching and background posting and photo uploads. The new version also allows users to view badges that they or their friends have earned and limit notifications on friends’ checkins to only when they are nearby. New high-resolution icons are now included for the iPhone 4 Retina Display and the post screen now accepts 140 Japanese characters. The update also includes a “cornucopia of bug zaps and feature tweaks” and performance improvements. Brightkite 2.8 is available from the App Store as a free download.
iOS developer Max Weisel has released MiTube, an application for viewing and downloading videos from YouTube on the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Although a version of this app named MxTube has been available for jailbroken iOS devices for some time, this represents the first official App Store approved version of the app. MiTube is a universal app and allows users to stream and download videos from YouTube Mobile in any available quality, including HD versions. The application provides a basic YouTube search capability to locate videos and users can choose to stream or download each video in low or high quality, with HD versions where available. Downloaded videos are stored within the app and can be transferred to the user’s PC or Mac over USB via the File Sharing feature in iTunes. MiTube is available from the App Store as a free download.
Update: Sadly, but perhaps not surprisingly, the app has been removed from the App Store.
Imangi Studios has released an update to its popular Harbor Master HD game adding a new rewind feature and two additional maps. In Harbor Master HD users must successfully navigate ships to their proper berths and then back out again by drawing pathways on the iPad screen, avoiding other ships in the process. Version 1.3 introduces a rewind feature where users can undo a crash to continue playing the game. At the end of a game, users can choose to rewind, undo the crash and continue playing. Users start out with a fixed number of rewinds available, and earn additional rewinds by playing. Only one rewind can be used per game. Harbor Master HD includes a single playing map with additional maps available via in-app purchase; the latest update adds two new maps: Bermuda Triangle and Kraken Atoll. Harbor Master HD is available from the App Store as a free download.
iPhone developer David Muzi has released an update to his Trackr RSS and web reader app, adding support for local file storage and synchronization of stored files to iTunes over USB. The update also now allows files to be previewed directly within the app and adds new social networking services for sharing links to Facebook, Twitter, Instapaper, Read It Later, Google Reader, Delicious and more. Trackr allows users to read RSS feeds and web sites on their iPhone or iPod touch and download any linked files to either the local device storage or upload them to Dropbox directly from within the app. Users of multitasking-capable iOS 4 devices can also continue file transfers in the background and the application also provides iPhone 4 Retina Display optimized graphics and offline RSS viewing capabilities. Trackr requires an iPhone or iPod touch running iOS 4 or later and is available from the App Store for $3.
City Interactive has released Chronicles of Mystery: Curse of the Ancient Temple, a new game for the iPhone and iPod touch which combines features of point and click adventure, logic puzzle and hidden object games. In Chronicles of Mystery, the player takes on the role of Sylvie, a young archaeologist who travels to France to visit her uncle, a renowned historian, to find that he has gone missing after a recent discovery of a mysterious underground chapel from the times of the Crusades. Sylvie must embark on a journey to find her uncle and uncover the long-forgotten secrets of the Knights Hospitaller. Players travel through various areas to find hidden objects among the scenery and solve various puzzles such as balancing weights, matching symbols and navigating mazes. The storyline is enhanced by detailed 3D graphics and background music, and the game contains 50 fully-rendered locations, 14 mini-games and a special Hidden World game mode that allows users to play classic hidden object levels. Chronicles of Mystery: Curse of the Ancient Temple is available from the App Store for $4.
Avici Software has released Whiteboard HD, a new multi-functional interactive whiteboard application for the iPad. Designed for use in boardroom, work group and classroom environments, Whiteboard HD allows users to visualize ideas by writing notes, sketching diagrams and recording brainstorming sessions. Users can make freeform drawings or manipulate pre-drawn shapes and lines using standard multi-touch gestures, dynamically place and orient labels and text boxes and select from grid or lined template backgrounds. Images and diagrams can be imported from the iPad photo library and the whiteboard content can be saved to the app’s project manager or shared via e-mail. The application also supports video output through Apple’s iPad VGA Adapter in multiple aspect ratios to external monitors or projectors. Whiteboard HD is available from the App Store for an introductory price of $6 until August 18th, after which the price will increase to $10.
Apple has released its third beta version of iOS 4.1 as well as the accompanying SDK. It remains unclear whether iOS 4.1 addresses the iPhone 4’s proximity sensor issue, however, the release does remove support for Apple’s Game Center social gaming network on the iPhone 3G and 2nd generation iPod Touch, according to Mac Rumors. Both the new iOS 4.1 SDK Beta 2 and pre-release builds are available now for download by paid iPhone developers from the iPhone Dev Center.
Art in Games has released an iPad version of Air Attack, its top-down air combat shooter. Air Attack HD (iLounge rating: A) provides the same features as its iPhone counterpart with higher-resolution graphics optimized for the iPhone display. AirAttack is an arcade-style top down air combat shooter where the player controls an aircraft flying over enemy territory and scores points by shooting down enemy aircraft, ships, ground vehicles and turrets. The game provides eight missions, 58 different enemy types, numerous upgrades and special weapons and three difficulty modes. Players can choose to control the game using direct touchscreen control, an on-screen joypad or accelerometer-based tilt controls. The game features detailed 3D graphics within lighting and special effects, an orchestral music score and realtime physics. Air Attack HD is available from the App Store for $1. The iPhone and iPod touch version is also available separately from the App Store for $1. A free Lite version is also available.
Popcap Games has released its Boosts & Coins update to Bejeweled 2 for the iPhone and iPod touch. The new version 1.3 expands the popular Bejeweled Blitz mode, enabling players to use coins to purchase “boosts,” power-ups that can generate higher scores. Players receive a 50,000 coin bonus the first time they play online, and then earn more coins as they progress through the game. Thousands of coins are needed to purchase several extra seconds on the clock—which last for several games in a row—or gem-flipping, mystery gem, detonator, or free multiplier boosts. Coins earned on the iPhone and iPod touch version can be used anywhere that the user plays Bejeweled Blitz, whether on their device or via the web. The latest update also improves iOS 4 compatibility and support for international player names. Bejeweled 2 + Blitz is available from the App Store for $3 and is a free update for current users; a Facebook account is required to play in the online Blitz mode.
Apple’s Remote app was well-received by iPhone and iPod touch users when it was released in July 2008, but after eight months with no updates, many users have wondered what the status was with its development. According to Sachin Agarwal, former Apple employee and CEO of Posterous, the Remote app is written and maintained by a single man—a good friend of his—who has been busy working on other things. Agarwal explains, “Apple doesn’t build large teams to work on every product they make. Instead, they hire very few, but very intelligent people who can work on different projects and move around as needed. One day you might be working on the Remote app, and the next day you might get pulled on to another project that needs your help.” The lack of updates to the Remote app have left it unable to take full advantage of iOS 4, the iPhone 4’s retina display, or the iPad’s larger screen; no timetable has been given for when the app might again be updated.
Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has launched an investigation into Apple’s and Amazon’s deals with major book publishers. According to a press release released by Blumenthal, the deals both companies have signed with the major publishers may be anticompetitive; letters have been sent to both Apple (PDF Link) and Amazon requesting meetings to discuss and address these concerns. “These agreements among publishers, Amazon and Apple appear to have already resulted in uniform prices for many of the most popular e-books—potentially depriving consumers of competitive prices,” Blumenthal said. “Amazon and Apple combined will likely command the greatest share of the retail e-book market, allowing their most-favored-nation clauses to effectively set the floor prices for the most popular e-books. Such agreements—especially when offered to two of the largest e-book retail competitors in the United States—threaten to encourage coordinated pricing and discourage discounting.”
One Man Left has released an update to its popular Tilt to Live shooting game for the iPhone and iPod touch adding a new gameplay mode, a new weapon and seven new awards to earn. Tilt to Live 1.4 adds the long-fabled Frostbite mode in which a blizzard of frozen enemies fall from the top of the play area toward a steaming hot spring below and the player must shatter through waves of these frozen dots. As the player smashes enemies, a meter at the bottom of the screen fills and eventually spawns a new Burnicade weapon that allows the player to draw a burning barricade by tilting. The Burnicade weapon can also be unlocked for inclusion in the user’s weapon arsenals for other game modes. The latest update also features seven new award challenges powered by the AGON social gaming platform and fixes some minor iOS4 and sound effect issues. The developer has indicated to iLounge that this is expected to be the final update to Tilt to Live as the company shifts its focus to other new projects. Tilt to Live 1.4 is available from the App Store for $3 and is a free update for current users.
Jet Set Games has released an iPad version of its popular turn-based strategy game for the iPhone and iPod touch. Highborn HD provides the same casual strategy game experience as its iPhone counterpart with re-designed maps and enhanced high-resolution, hand-drawn artwork optimized for the iPad display. In Highborn, players are treated to two strategy games to provide an intelligent tactical experience in a more relaxed turn-based model. Players deploy forces using an overhead map view to secure spells and combat support and then engage in 3D combat to use those advantages against enemy forces. The strategic elements of the game are set against a background storyline with wacky heroes and witty dialogue. Players can choose from many different styles of play, unlocking hero characters with different abilities throughout the course of the game. The game also provides more than 20 single- and multi-player achievements that can be unlocked and includes OpenFeint integration allowing users to compete against other players online. Highborn HD is available from the App Store for $3; the iPhone and iPod touch version is sold separately on the App Store for $1.
MGS Development has released an update to its forScore app for reading and storing musical scores on the iPad, adding several UI improvements and support for new annotation and metadata features. forScore is a musical score reader that allows iPad users to take their sheet music with them in PDF format, and includes such features as an audible and visual metronome, the ability to make on-screen annotations, easily navigate through pages and associate scores with tracks in the iPad music library. forScore 1.5 adds a number of new features including pinch-to-zoom, the ability to auto-turn sequential pages using the metronome, set additional metadata for rating, difficulty and genre, adjust annotation brush sizes and stamp annotations for commonly-used symbols. Users can also now create and e-mail forScore-specific files that include all metadata, annotations and links for sharing with other forScore users. Other improvements include built-in database backup and restore capability, a redesigned integrated Setlist Builder with submenu search and batch editing capabilities. forScore 1.5 is available from the App Store for $5 and is a free update for current users.
The Omni Group has released the much-anticipated iPad version of its OmniFocus professional task management app. Although OmniFocus has been available on the iPhone and iPod touch for some time, OmniFocus for iPad has been completely redesigned for the iPad user interface. The iPad version provides in-depth desktop-style task management capabilities, allowing users to take advantage of features previously only available in OmniFocus for the Mac. OmniFocus for iPad includes flexible viewing options, location-aware task lists and on-the-fly task entry including voice notes and image attachments. Users can use the iPad version as a standalone task management app or synchronize with the Mac or iPhone versions of OmniFocus using any WebDAV server or The Omni Group’s own free sync service. Advanced features include full search capabilities, location-based task assignment with an integrated map view, daily and weekly forecasts or due tasks and a built-in task review feature. OmniFocus for iPad is available from the App Store for $40. More information on the app, including demonstration videos can be found on the company’s OmniFocus for iPad Product Page
Amazon has released an update to its Kindle app for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad adding an in-app dictionary, book searching, and iOS 4 improvements. Kindle 2.2 now provides the ability to instantly lookup selected words in a 250,000-entry built-in dictionary as well as searching for words on Google and Wikipedia from within the app. The update also brings the ability to search inside books to the iPad and improves the in-book search introduced to the iPhone and iPod touch in the previous update. The latest version also brings iOS 4 Fast App Switching on multitasking-capable devices and other iOS 4 related bug fixes. Kindle is available from the App Store as a free download.
Electronic Arts has released the latest iPhone game in its popular SimCity franchise. First previewed in March, SimCity Deluxe is an improved version of EA’s original SimCity application for the iPhone and iPod touch and provides a visual style akin to EA’s SimCity 4 with noticeable enhancements in user interface, graphics and frame rate. In SimCity Deluxe, players can play an open-ended game and build their own city or choose from one of seven predesigned cities and remake them from there. The game also provides seven scenarios where users must reshape and plan their cities to meet specific goals such as staging a World Games or coping with a heat wave. SimCity Deluxe also introduces seasons with specific seasonal disasters that can befall a player’s city and allows users to modify terrain and landscape their cities using touch controls. SimCity Deluxe is available from the App Store for $7.
Omz:software has released a major update to its popular NewsRack RSS reader for the iPhone and iPad adding iOS 4 support and several additional features and improvements. NewsRack 2.5 now supports background task completion and fast app switching on multitasking-capable iOS 4 devices and provides high-resolution graphics for the iPhone 4 Retina Display. A new slideshow mode is also now available for iPad users. Additional improvements include much faster synchronization with Google Reader, the ability to mark articles as unread, synchronization of Google Reader shared items, Instapaper Mobilizer support and the ability to download older news items from Google Reader. The update also provides a number of user interface improvements on both the iPhone and iPad platforms, although themes are no longer available for iPhone and iPod touch users. NewsRack 2.5 is currently not compatible with the iPhone 3G with iOS 4; the developer indicates an update for this will be “follow shortly.” The iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 are fully supported, as are any devices running iOS 3.x. NewsRack is available from the App Store for $5 and is a free update for current users.
Apple is to blame for the current lack of iPad magazine subscription options, according to a new report. AllThingsD reports that Time Inc. was planning to launch a subscription version of its Sports Illustrated iPad app with payments being handled by the publisher, until Apple rejected the application at the last minute, forcing Time to sell single copies as in-app purchases. Notably, a number of the app’s negative reviews mention the lack of a subscription option. The report states that Time executives “have been going nuts” trying to find a way to get Apple to approve a subscription plan. In addition, Apple reportedly approved the company’s subscription plans prior to the iPad’s launch, during a time when Apple was communicating with Time executives. As the report notes, no other magazine publisher has gained approval to sell its own iOS app subscriptions, either.
Resolution Interactive has released a sequel to its acclaimed Aqua Moto Racing game for the iPhone and iPod touch. Aqua Moto Racing 2 is a first-person water racing game that allows players to race one of 12 unique JetSkis in exotic locations such as the Tropics, Greece and Egypt. The game provides significantly improved graphics with dynamic waves and an improved wave physics engine for increased realism. Players can race in six different locations with unique lighting, choose from 48 different courses, and play in career mode to unlock new championships and achievements in the quest to attain Legendary Status. Players level-up their rider through 10 different ranks by performing stunts, beating target times, unlocking medals and winning championships, and can connect to OpenFeint to challenge other players and compare race results on the OpenFeint Leaderboards. Aqua Moto Racing 2 is available from the App Store for $5. A free Lite version with only three courses and three JetSkis is also available.