IPhone 3.0 Opens up New Features for Developers

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The iPhone 3.0 update has lots of goodies for end-users. But the update's real treasure trove may be the thousand or so programming tools Apple has added for app makers. With these programming enhancements, developers can add new features and built-in capabilities to their apps, further swelling the ranks of useful App Store offerings. Just a few days after iPhone 3.0's official release, we're already starting to see the arrival of apps that take advantage of these newfound tools. Here's a sampling of some of the iPhone 3.0-enhanced apps that have caught our eye.


The latest version of OmniFocus for the iPhone supports a number of iPhone 3.0 features, according to The Omni Group. In addition to cut, copy, and paste functionality, OmniFocus 1.5 taps into the integrated Maps feature by displaying nearby context categories of possible tasks using a map. Users can touch a pin to see all the tasks within the corresponding context category. The Omni Group also says that its updated task manager adds a new Search screen that searches through projects and actions. A new Repeat screen lets users quickly set up repeating activities and projects. And web links now render directly inside OmniFocus 1.5, enabling quicker viewing.--Philip Michaels

Twittelator Pro

iPhone 3G S owners using the latest version of Twittelator Pro will be able to shoot, edit, and upload video tweets using the new phone's camera in conjunction with the $5 Twitter client from Big Stone Phone. But those aren't the only iPhone 3.0-friendly changes in Twittelator Pro 3.0. The update also supports cut, copy, and paste functionality, including the ability to paste an image from another application into your tweet. iPhone 3.0 users can also shake to undo composed tweets before publishing them with the updated Twittelator. And users can see a street, satellite, or hybrid map view of the location of any tweeter. Other changes in Twittelator Pro 3.0 include the ability to e-mail tweets and links without leaving the application and instant access to more than 560 dingbats and emoji characters.--PM

Star Defense and Topple 2

Game developer Ngmoco has tweaked a pair of its offerings to take advantage of iPhone 3.0. An update to the developer's tower defense game Star Defense allows players to compete with each other via "Direct Challenges," sent out using push notification over Ngmoco's newly unveiled "Plus+ network," along with notifications over Twitter, Facebook and e-mail. A new planet has been added in Challenge mode, as well. Ngmoco has also updated Topple 2, the sequel to its popular stacking game for the iPhone and iPod touch. The new 1.3 update lets users have full control over their iPod music playlists, so you can stack to your own music instead of listening to the game's own canned soundtrack.--Peter Cohen


Pangea Software has released a free update for Enigmo, its popular physics-based puzzle game for the iPhone and iPod touch. Version 3.0 introduces support for iPhone OS 3.0's new in-app purchases feature, letting people purchase new Level Packs created by Pangea. The Kids' Pack #1 and #2--levels specifically designed for younger players--are the first two packs. Each pack contains more than two dozen new levels, and is priced at $1 each.--PC

Whole Foods Market Recipes

Whole Foods Market has launched a free app for producing recipes based on natural and organic foods you can find at Whole Foods Markets. Whole Foods Market Recipes taps into iPhone OS 3.0 by offering a store locator to help you find a Whole Foods Market near you--you enter a ZIP code search or use the iPhone's location finder to find your closest Whole Foods Store, with links to maps, directions, operating hours and other details. More than 2,000 recipes are available, including gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan dishes.--PC

Flick Fishing

Freeverse Software has released an update to Flick Fishing, its fishing game for the iPhone and iPod touch. The software uses in-app purchases to add new content like a new location, fish, and a new game mode called "Fish Jack" that uses the new Bluetooth-based peer-to-peer connectivity feature in iPhone 3.0. The new add-on content is called The Private Beach Pack, and costs $1.--PC

Vans Sk8 Pool Service

Fuel Games has released an update to Vans Sk8: Pool Service, its skateboarding action game. The game lets you take control of pro skaters Bucky Lasek and Omar Hassan, choosing their boards and wheels as they skate in abandoned pools in ten unique events. The new release features the ability to pull music from your own iPod playlist.--PC

Leaf Trombone: World Stage

Leaf Trombone: World Stage, is a "massively-multiplayer musical game" from Smule in which you perform songs by blowing into your iPhone's microphone. You can compose your own songs and publish them for other players to listen to. You can also judge other people's playing abilities. Version 1.5 capitalizes on iPhone 3.0 with a "Duet Mode" that works using peer-to-peer Bluetooth networking. Achievement Alerts are also offered, using iPhone 3.0's push service.--PC


An updated version of Trapster that takes advantage of iPhone 3.0 features hasn't appeared in the App Store as of this writing--developer Trapster.com says it's been submitted to Apple for approval--but the free speed-trap locating app figures to take advantage of the new developer tools in two significant ways. First, the ability to embed maps directly into applications helps Trapster launch faster. The app launches in 8 seconds now, Trapster.com says, as opposed to 24 seconds with the old version, which had to use a Safari Web view and approximately 1,000 lines of JavaScript. Second, Trapster users now get push notifications as they drive, saving them from having to keep the app open to get speed trap alerts. Previous versions of Trapster relied on text messages to update users--a solution that Trapster.com conceded was both inelegant and expensive.--PM

This story, "IPhone 3.0 Opens up New Features for Developers" was originally published by Macworld.

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