As we promised you earlier this year, 2011 has been and will be an exciting year for our community, with multiple changes on all fronts. We have done quite well so far: an amazingly successful Homebrew Bounty with over $5,500 redistributed to homebrew developers, a tutorial competition that has warranted the opening of a massive tutorial & guide section, the opening of ShopTemp.net our online product & store information/review site, further coverage of the Nintendo 3DS & PS Vita in the news and forums, and so on. It is time to reveal the second part of our 2011 plans. GBAtemp Merch Store Remember last year's t-shirt design competition? Our plan to produce the t-shirts last summer was delayed due to technical reasons related to the production of the shirts. The plan was even annihilated by the take down of ShopTemp.com, our partner that was going to handle production & logistics. But as we promised earlier this year, we have opened our very own merchandise store, run by members of the GBAtemp staff! We are now able to offer not just Orc's awesome t-shirt but also a selection of goodies that will lighten up your summer... or winter for you aussies and kiwis down there! Most of our members have received early PMs with more info, but we are now going fully public with it and discussion is as of now fully allowed on the forums (sorry if your posts got censored before, but it's alright now). Another fact that not all of you may be aware of: we were able to retrieve ShopTemp's customer database and if you ever purchased something off ShopTemp.com you should be able to login to our new site without registering again. What this also means is that customers that had store credit on ShopTemp.com will be able to spend some of it (in a reasonable limit) on the merchandise store, we're doing this as a tribute to our members that worked hard towards promoting the store back then. If you intend to spend your store credit please contact me before placing your order. Needless to say we will be offering even better products in the future, stuff that may actually be *useful* to you (hah!) such as DS and 3DS cases or pouches, various accessories and there could also be a new t-shirt design competition sometime this year. Stay tuned! Forum Software Update: IPB 3 You may or may not have noticed the poll that we ran earlier this month. We asked our members what they would like to see next, in other words what the community would like the staff to focus on in terms of site updates. Unsurprisingly you voted for a forum software update. It is no secret that we are running a forum software that was developed something like 5 years ago. Times have changed, the web has evolved and we need to evolve with it. We will proceed to an upgrade in the coming months, in fact it could happen sooner than you think. If you think that an update of our forum software will result in minor changes, you couldn't be more wrong. There have been huge improvements over the new versions which I will attempt to summarize here in this short, non-exhaustive list: Revamp of the PM system towards a fully conversational messenger Like system with "like" button on posts (though we are still discussing whether this option should be fully enabled) Full navigation is possible on mobile devices thanks to a special skin designed for smartphones. Also Tapatalk and the IPB application are both enabled. Social interactions have improved: better profile page with status updates, friend posts, comments and much more. A powerful Facebook-like notification system to keep you informed of all that's happening A full-fledged blog system, much better than our current blog hack A gallery system for picture hosting, sharing & commenting A brand new shoutbox with advanced features (auto-refresh!) A few more add-ons that we don't wish to disclose yet, and a huge amount of new little things that will make this place a lot better. We are impatient to welcome you onboard this new boat, we'll work hard to get it to set sail as soon as possible! Stay tuned!