5 free and exciting iPhone Games

Steve Jobs, while launching the iTunes app store remarked that the iPhone (and iPod touch) is the best gaming device ever made.

And looking at the kind of games available for the iPhone, I completely agree with ‘ol Steve.

The App store has thousands of games available already, both paid and free. And each one of those games has been approved by Apple, so you can be atleast sure that whatever is available on the app store right now, is high quality stuff.

In this post, we’ll look at some interesting iPhone games that are available right now and, of course, are free to download and use.

Matches

Matches is the iPhone version of the old game known as Memory or, well, Matches.

Each card on the screen has a matching that the player has to find and there is a time limit for uncovering all the matches. There are many levels and the time available to find all matches keeps shrin

king and so the game becomes increasingly more challenging as the levels progress. Exactly, the kind of thing you want to be engrossed in on a Sunday afternoon 🙂

iBowl

iBowl is from the makers of iGolf, another exciting and addictive free iPhone game. As is obvious from the name, iBowl is a bowling game – With a twist.

The difference between iBowl and the other bowling games that most of us have grown up playing on other consoles is that iBowl uses the accelerometer built into the iPhone for the bowling part. What that means is that the player presses a button and pretends to bowl as if he’s playing a real bowling game, with the iPhone in hand instead of the, well, ball.

You can even challenge a friend to a game of Bowling, althought this doesn’t exactly do this using multi player gaming. Instead, iBowl sends an email to your friend asking them to load up iBowl and then probably uses the developer’s website to keep track of scores. I’m saying probably because I haven’t personally tried this option till now. I’m happy playing and winning against … myself 🙂

WordWrap

WordWrap is the iPhone implementation of the classic jumbled words dictionary based game – You get a set of letters, jumbled up, and you’re required to form as many words as you can out of those letters. If you use all the letters to form a single word, bonus points. Each progressive level gets more difficult, or not, depending on how well you’ve studied the dictionary. ‘Nuff said … this game has to be played to really be able to appreciate it.

Vegas Pool Sharks Lite

This is another of my favorite iPhone Games. I can spend hours playing this one, or atleast as long as the battery on my iPhone lets me.

Vegas Pool sharks is like playing Pool with a twist. The Lite version is the good ‘ol Pool game which you play against an opponent controlled by the computer iPhone. The paid version promises to make the game even more fun by letting you play against stakes. Now, this is one thing every gamer knows. Put some money on the table and watch a boring game transform into the most fearsome encounter ever.

Tic Tac Toe

I’m sure this one will bring back fond memories of all those classes spent sitting in the last row playing Tic Tac Toe with your best bud, while the teacher continues with the most boring lecture ever.

It sure evokes those feelings in me. I’ve literally spent ages playing this game and the last page of all my school notebooks will testify to that. I’m just glad the game is back in its most eco friendly avatar ever. I love it.

Those were some of our favorite iPhone games and I’m sure I’ve missed tonnes more. Go ahead … type in those comments and share with us your favorite iPhone games. We’d love to hear about any tips you’ve got too … for getting past the difficult levels, you know 😉

iPhone 3G in India – Vodafone and Airtel

IPHONE 3G

So, Vodafone is finally ready to launch the iPhone 3G in India. Vodafone in an SMS to all their customers announced this yesterday.

We are delighted to announce that the iPhone 3G will be available in India from August 22, 2008
It will be available in 8GB & 16GB models, priced at Rs 31,000 and Rs 36,100 respectively.

INR 31000 equals approximately $600 and I think that’s quite steep and at this price there are a lot of other alternatives available in the market. But, what do I know. Fanboys will be fanboys. I’m sure the first batch of iPhones will be a sellout and Apple will be happily adding lots more money to their account.

WordPress for iPhone

WordPress is working on a new mobile application for the iPhone.

The WordPress for iPhone App is nearly ready to go.  It supports WordPress.com blogs as well as self-hosted WordPress.org blogs running version 2.5.1 or newer.

This, I beleive, would be great for technology or news based blogs which would now be able to report on the latest greatest in the world almost as soon as they hear about it.

Singtel confirms iPhone launch for India (and other markets)

Singtel in a press release has confirmed that it would be distributing the iPhone in India through Airtel. This along with Vodaphone’s press release earlier this month has made India one of the few countries in the world, where the iPhone will be available on two competing carriers. I’m dying to see the competitive wars unfold ! Here’s hoping the Indian iPhone consumer gets a good deal 🙂

Raging Thunder shows the iPhone's potential

 

If you had any doubts about the potential of the iPhone as a gaming platform, you should put them to rest now. Raging Thunder is a new 3D game which uses the accelerometer to steer a car and uses openGL for the graphics. The graphics, btw, are pretty sleek and even though the games’s not perfect yet, we’re not complaining. Now, if only the car would stop steering so dramatically with the slightest movement of the iPhone, I would probably be able to complete some more laps. Nonetheless, I should add, Gentlemen fire your installer.apps and try this wonderful addition to the world of iPhone gaming.

 

 

iPhone SDK

Sharninder has an interesting post going by the title of “iPhone SDK and the aftermath”. Sharninder analyses the release of the SDK and the developer communities response to it.

“Apple has decreed that all iPhone applications will be sold via the iTunes store and that the developers will not be able to host their applications themselves. Further, to post applications to the iTunes store, the developers have the pay a one time charge of $99 and if they do manage to sell any apps, they will have to give 30% of their income to Apple. This 30% charge, apple claims, goes towards maintaining the web presence, hosting their applications and the credit card transaction charges. Apple also gets to approve the applications before they can be sold on iTunes. Apple has also stated that they will not allow VOIP applications on the cellular network but will allow VOIP while on WIFI.”

For the complete post go to Sharninder’s blog.

8GB iPhone and iPod Touch reach end-of-life

Atleast in the UK. Engadget is reporting, on the basis of a leaked O2 memo that the company has managed to empty its inventory and is not going to replenish the stock as it has reached it’s end of life. The recent price cuts in the UK have no doubt a part to play in this, but sceptics and rumour mongers would definitely be linking this with the imminent launch of the second gen iPhone 3G with higher storage. Whatever be the reason, it can only be good for those in the market for a new iPhone. Wait and watch this space for more updates.

The iPhone: A 'humbling' experience

The iPhone is beautiful. There are no two ways to describe it. I’ve never ever used a mobile phone as easy on the eyes as this phone and I’m loving it, absolutely.

But, as I use the iPhone more and more I’m starting to miss the various ‘features’ of a phone which I’d been used to all along. This has been discussed umpteen times around the interweb, but I just have to mention this. Features like SMS forwarding, rejecting incoming calls, sending business cards, taking down a number while in a call are not premium features and the iPhone should have provided these features from the go. But well, when you consider that the iPhone didn’t even allow one to send an SMS to multiple recipients till some time back, you realise that there is something seriously wrong with what the designers at Apple were thinking. I call using the iPhone a humbling experience because thats how I felt when I tried forwarding an SMS to a friend for the first time. I was humbled that, I,  an all powerful human, holding the great iPhone couldn’t even forward an SMS to another contact !

Don’t get me wrong here, I love the iPhone for what it is. And I know that an incoming call can be rejected by double tapping the power button. And that a new contact can be created while in call by going to add call->add contact. And there are external unsupported application available to forward SMSs and business cards. The point here is that Apple has released a semi functional device into the market to gain market share and is now trying to play catch up by introducing ‘premium’ features masked as firmware updates.

I’d have been happy if I’d paid $50 for a phone and it didn’t have certain features I was used to, but a $400 phone should have all this built in already. But then, Apple has been doing this for ages, Mac OS X 1.0 for almost unusable and they have been gradually making it more and more user friendly and feature packed, but a phone is not an operating system and missing to provide an SDK is different than not providing proper SMS functionality.

I’m still in love with my iPhone and only because I’ve never had such a good mobile browsing device and a phone in the same package before, and I’m really hoping that Apple puts in some of the missing functionality back with the new iPhone 2.0 firmware that is in the works right now.

Update: I know about the iPhone’s missing bluetooth profiles, MMS, Java, no copy-paste etc etc, I just haven’t started missing those features yet. Its just been about 15 days with the phone for me, though.

The Apple iPhone

Yes, I’ve finally bought the Iphone . Just couldn’t resist !

And the first question I have is, why couldn’t Nokia or any other big mobile company think of this device before Apple brought it to the market. There is nothing terribly difficult about making a mobile phone, I’m sure, atleast nothing that the other companies couldn’t have overcome. The iPhone is a mediocre phone with an awesome user interface and (almost) the best mobile browser around. Infact, I’ve been using the browser more than the phone ever since I got the iPhone. That should teach the nokias of the world something.

Apple chose to not include a lot of common mobile functionality with the first batch of iPhones, like the ability to send a single SMS to multiple recipients, but it still went on to become a smashing success. There must be something they did right.

The developer community has already embraced the device like no other and there is a horde of third party software available for the device and all this before Apple has even released the SDK. Enterprising hackers have released an unofficial SDK by reverse engineering the libraries that ship with it. The fact that the iPhone is locked to specific carriers hasn’t deterred anyone and the developers have developed simple one click applications to unlock the phone to work with any carrier. The unlocking applications are so easy that even a newbie can do this.

I’ll post a full review once I’ve had a chance to play a little more with the device but so far so good. My impressions are mostly positive 🙂