After splitting it from the full game back in December 2011, PopCap continues to add some of the previous and new features to their standalone Bejeweled Blitz app. The latest version of Blitz includes a new gem, notifications, settings and gameplay improvements, plus the return of stats.

As you can probably imagine, PopCap is getting plenty of requests to bring back a number of features available before the split. In Bejeweled Bltiz v1.15, you can finally view your stats again. Check up on your rank, medals, and scoring timeline by simply tapping your name on the leaderboard. The second returning feature is the low time indicator. Unlike Bejeweled 2 + Blitz, which flashed the entire screen red, this implementation simply flashes the top and bottom bars.

The new rare gem provided in this update is the Blazing Steed. Similar to the other rare gems, Blazing Steed must be harvested, costing 55,000 coins, and provides score boosting power by unleashing explosive flame gems. Of course, this rare gem can also be shared with your Facebook friends after being harvested and used.

In addition to Blazing Steed, Bejeweled Blitz v1.15 has another rare gem-related feature: Rare Gem Streaks. For those who have the coins, Rare Gem Streaks are very helpful. When a rare gem is found, there is now the strong possibility of finding them in groups. Not only does this provide a way to achieve higher scores, but each subsequent rare gem harvests cost 10,000 less coins.

Moving on, PopCap has provided a new setting, game background brightness control, and a leaderboard refresh button. Located in the bottom-right, the leaderboard refresh button allows players to refresh the leaderboard at any time, something most useful when competing against very active Blitzers. To adjust the brightness, tap on the up arrow at the bottom of the leaderboard and then tap Game Brightness.

Lastly, Bejeweled Blitz v1.15 now utilizes notifications to remind players that a Blitz Happy Hour is happening.

Bejeweled Blitz is a universal app compatible with iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch running iOS 3.0 or later, and available in the App Store as a free download.