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No way to mute Vuvuzela iPhone app

by Brad Spirrison

Soccer fans frustrated with the early low scoring matches of the 2010 World Cup can find impressive tallies (accompanied with annoying sounds) on their iPhones.

The Vuvuzela 2010 iPhone app, based on the popular and controversial African trumpet that is making noise waves all across South Africa this month, has been downloaded more than one million times (with most installments coming in June.) Unlike the real instrument, which is about a meter in length, fans can carry and conceal their digital blowing horns into sports bars, watching parties, or wherever else they go for kicks.

If Didier Drogba's return to action after a broken arm or the U.S. tying England in the first round didn't generate any attention in your office, this novelty app sure will surely turn heads (if not fists.)  While Vuvuzela 2010 by itself can never match the audio impact of the 127 decibel brass instrument, you'll have no problem hearing it when played in your proximity.

The app's one real function is to mimic the sound of the Vuvuzela, which Wikipedia compares to "a stampede of noisy elephants." That's pretty much it. The horn image within the app comes in 10 different colors, which can be controlled by tapping miniature jerseys that line up on either side of it. The only other thing displayed on the screen are a few rotating ads and information about the app's Netherlands-based developer.

If these features aren't enough, you can try tapping into one of more than 20 Vuvuzela-related apps currently available at the iTunes App Store. No word yet on how the 3D-enabled gryoscope or multi-tasking functionality of the iPhone 4 released later this month will impact future development of Vuvuzela-focused apps. More likely, Vuvuzela 2010 appears to be this year's version of the free Virtual Zippo Lighter.

If the BBC and ESPN are successful in filtering the noise of real Vuvuzela's from their 2010 World Cup broadcasts, this mobile media marvel will still be there to amplify your soccer viewing experience this summer.