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A clipboard manager and 2D fighting at its best: iPhone apps of the week Before we get to this week's apps, a news item over at AppleInsider indicates we may be getting a change to the iPhone operating system that many have been talking about. According to one AppleInsider's more reliable sources, the iPhone OS 4.0 could add multitasking support in the next OS update. This means you'll be able to run apps simultaneously making it possible to switch between apps without closing them.A lot of smartphones already have multitasking support, so it's been one of the bigger complaints for detractors of the iPhone. Frankly, I think it's a welcome change to the OS that might make it easier to do some tasks, but up until now I haven't really had any need for it. I'm sure there are plenty of readers who have been waiting for this rumored upgrade in the next iPhone OS, so please let us know in the comments how you think multitasking will change the way you use your iPhone.This week's apps include a powerful clipboard manager to store information and media, and an enormously popular arcade fighting game that is now on the iPhone.Store images or text and browse through your clips with a swipe of your finger.Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNETPastebot Command Copy & Paste ($2.99) lets you take clips of information and save them for later in a slick-looking interface. When you're browsing the Web and come across interesting information or find an image you want to save, Pastebot lets you copy the image or information and save it to its own clipboard. Simply use the iPhone's copy tool to select the info or image you want to copy, hit copy, then launch Pastebot and the image or text will automatically show up in the app. From there you can edit text, give the clip a title, or run the clip through a filter to perform specific tasks such as converting all text to lowercase, straightening quotes, wrapping in HTML tags, and much more.Pastebot lets you store up to 99 clips through the normal clipboards, but you can store items in folders for long-term storage. This makes creating titles for clips extremely important because it will enable you to search for them later. If you're using a Mac, you also can download the Pastebot preference pane from the developer's Web site that allows you to wirelessly transfer clips to your Mac over Wi-Fi (the Windows sync tool is still in development). Overall, if you have the need to collect information and images you find on the Web, or need a good way to transfer info and images from your iPhone to your Mac, Pastebot Command Copy & Paste is a good choice.Street Fighter 4 ($9.99) is a 2D fighting game that needs little in the way of introduction, but is surprisingly fun even using the iPhone touch screen. In the iPhone version you can play with eight characters from the original game across seven environments. The graphics look great even on the iPhone 3G, and the touch-screen controls work surprisingly well with only a little bit of practice. There are a few different ways to play including a Tournament mode, where you fight multiple matches against each of the different characters; Dojo, which trains you on all of the different moves for your selected character; Free-Sparring, for when you want to fight a specific character to find his weaknesses; and a Training Room where you can practice your moves. You also can play against your friends in versus mode, but only over a Bluetooth connection.Though it may appear the controls get in the way of the action, once you start playing you won't even notice.Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNETI think the main question most people will have about Street Fighter 4 on the iPhone (before spending the money) is how well the controls work on a touch screen. You get a control pad on the left and buttons for Punch, Kick, and special moves on the right (though you can move the controls wherever you want using the settings). Capcom decided to leave out the low and medium punch/kick buttons, which may bother Street Fighter veterans, but even without them, the game offers an enormous amount of moves. When I first started playing, it was admittedly difficult to get used to the onscreen control pad and buttons to perform some of the more complex moves. But after a few fights, even the more difficult moves started to get much easier. Overall, if you're a fan of Street Fighter, the iPhone version is true to the original with great-looking graphics, surprisingly solid controls, and a challenging AI, making it easily worth the price tag.What's your favorite iPhone app? Are you happy to hear about the rumored addition of multitasking support? Do you have a better clipboard manager than Pastebot? What do you think of the touch-screen controls of Street Fighter 4? Let me know in the comments!A conversation with Microsoft's marketing strategist Microsoft plans to continue using the voice of customers to speak for the company. Webster said that Apple created a great opportunity for Microsoft when it turned Windows into the stodgy PC guy played by John Hodgman."Ultimately they made the choice to anthropomorphize the hardware platform to a human being," Webster said. "In so doing they are making a statement about our customers, not just our products. I think a lot of the work that we do really does do a nice job of taking that back and saying 'we're proud of who our customers are as they are proud of us.'"That effort will likely spill over as Microsoft looks to do more consumer-oriented advertising for Office 2010.Webster notes that while many people use Office for mundane tasks, the software also has surprising uses, ranging from a person who plans race course tracks in OneNote to people designing needlework in Excel. One friend of Webster does his Passover seder in PowerPoint with embedded sound clips from Charlton Heston in "The Ten Commandments." "Office has a richer story to tell than we sometimes give them credit," he said. "People actually do a fascinating array of things."One of the challenges for Webster and his team is that Microsoft's marketing dollars are split between categories where it is the 800-pound gorilla--like Windows and Office--and those where it is the upstart, such as Bing and Windows Phone. Although it is nice to be the leader, Webster says that products like Bing give the company more of a chance to experiment with new types of advertising.For Windows, Microsoft plans to continue the current "Windows 7 is my idea" campaign, which Webster insists still has legs."We really think that we touched a nerve there," Webster said. It says we made your priorities our priorities. We focused on the things that you care about in focusing our R&D efforts."That idea could span to other parts of the Windows business beyond the operating system, he said."It's actually an interesting way to think about talking about IE or Windows Live or even some of the PCs that our (hardware) partners are bringing to market."Not all of Microsoft's bets last year paid off. For example, the company signed a deal for Windows 7 to sponsor a variety show by the creators of "Family Guy," only to promptly pull the sponsorship when the event proved too risque. Webster said that's probably an example where the company has a challenge both protecting the brand and keeping it relevant for a new generation."On the one hand, you can say 'Had you ever seen the Family Guy?'" Webster said. "Clearly we had. The issue was, if you want to reach a more student population, if you want to give Windows some cultural relevance with the younger population, 'Family Guy' is a property certainly (that could do that)."He said that the idea sounded good on paper. "It's not crazy," he said. That said, as the event got closer and the company saw the scripts, it became clearer that it was not such a great fit. "I always say we reserve the right to wake up smarter every day and make better decisions. As we learned, as we got closer, we were able to call an audible (and pull out)."And, while the idea of house parties for Windows 7 might have been a good idea, Webster concedes the companion instructional videos were "cheesy."But, all-in-all, he said he applauds the fact that Microsoft is willing to push the envelope more."In the tech space, when you look at the companies competitively that we are going up against,I don't see a lot of risk taking, of being out there, in the moment," Webster said. On the phone front, Webster notes that Microsoft has a challenge in going up against Apple, which is both the market leader and spends a fortune on its advertising for the iPhone. But he said, the big brands--Apple, BlackBerry, and Android--have kind of established their niche in the smartphone market."We're coming back to this party after the other guys have already played their hand," he said. "From a design standpoint, they are all more or less locked into the decisions they have made."I pointed out that Microsoft appears to be going after a similar approach as Palm did with the Pre--positioning its device as the right phone for your whole life."In the tech space, when you look at the companies competitively that we are going up against, I don't see a lot of risk taking, of being out there, in the moment." -- David Webster , chief marketing strategist, Microsoft "They probably did research that was similar to the research we did," he said. "I think they found some similar findings. There's a degree to which we deliver on that promise a little bit more holistically...I like our business odds."As for Natal, Webster said that Microsoft does plan a big push, but he declined to give many hints. The Xbox add-on won't use Natal in its name, though he wouldn't say how it would be branded.For his part, Webster is not your typical Microsoft guy. He was hired by Microsoft back in 2001 when he was working at branding consultant Siegel+Gale. He was pitching Microsoft for some business and was hired by Mich Mathews, the senior vice president in charge of the company's marketing. Webster did move from the East Coast to Redmond, Wash., but eventually convinced Mathews to let him move his family back to Connecticut where he could be close to both New York ad agencies, as well as the rest of his family, which he said are all congregated within about 30 miles of Manhattan.Among Webster's ideas was the Mojave Experiment, where Microsoft filmed users' reactions with Windows Vista without telling them what operating system they were using. He's also been a big proponent of the need to do a better job of naming products. Even features within key products, he said, should be "word-of-mouthable." Webster points to the Shake and Snap features of Windows 7 as examples of features that have simple, easy-to-remember names.That was also the goal, he said, with Bing. The company had several criteria in rebranding the search engine, he said. The company wanted a name that was one syllable and couldn't be misspelled and was as short as possible.Webster said he initially came up with "Bang." The name had a few things going for it, he noted. "It's there, it's an exclamation point," he said. "It's the opposite of a question mark."But somehow it didn't work as well when used as a verb."Oh, I banged it' is very different than 'I binged it'," he said.In the end, he said, Bing proved to be a near-perfect choice, representing what he called "the sound of found.""We really hit the jackpot with Bing," he said.