updated 12:45 pm EDT, Mon April 24, 2006
iPod nano knockoffs
iPod knockoffs are flying off the shelves, so to speak, in Tiawan. Following a warning from Apple to its resellers last week about fake iPods, a new report says that the iPod nano knockoffs, which are manufactured in China, can cost as little as half of the regular price of Apple's iPod, according to The Tapaie Times. "The Nano Apple is available in three different storage capacities: 512MB, 1GB, 2GB. If you don't look carefully, the device could easily be mistaken for original Apple iPod nanos." The report says that the most noticeable difference is that instead of "Menu," which is written on the iPod nano's dial, the Nano Apple has an "M," and that the Nano Apple's "play" button is in the center of the dial, while the volume is controlled at the bottom of the dial. Both MP3 players have 1.5-inch screens, and "despite the slight alteration in the placement of the function keys, the look, finish and feel of the devices makes them indistinguishable from Apple Computer's product to the casual observer," according to the report.
Despite the some quality issues, pricing seems to be driving the sale of the knockoffs, as some internet resellers indicate that they are unable to keep the Nano Apple in stock. The manufacturer said that the knockoffs come with better service and a 7-day, money-back guarantee.
"We provide after-sales service and irresistible functions that a real iPod nano is not able to offer. It is a simply a matter of supply and demand," said Chang, a representative of the Chinese-based manufacturer.
Last December, Apple sought to protect its intellectual property, accussing Iops, a Korean portable music player manufacturer, of illegally copying the design of its popular iPod mini music player. Iops, the fifth largest MP3 player seller in South Korea, received an official complaint from Apple in October which demanded the Korean firm stop manufacturing and selling its two MP3 player models, the Iops Jock and Iops Z3.