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Meizu booth closed over iPhone copy? [U]

updated 02:20 pm EST, Wed March 5, 2008

Meizu Booth Forced Closed

(Update from Meizu on the raid) Meizu has been removed from the show floor at the CeBIT technology expo over copyright issues for its MiniOne smartphone, according to a new report by Germany's Heise. Local police on Wednesday morning declared the booth closed and insisted on the removal of virtually every item on display, including marketing pamphlets as well as demonstration models. Meizu has not commented on the action, which brings a premature end to its presence at the Hanover show.

Officials additionally confirmed that other companies are being pulled from the show today as part of a wider initiative, though full details are not likely to be revealed until a press conference on Thursday.

The crackdown is already believed to be at the request of Apple, whose iPhone is on sale in Germany and is known to be the direct inspiration for the MiniOne and a raft of offerings from smaller companies. Meizu's device is based on Windows Mobile 6 but includes several hardware design and user interface elements clearly derived from Apple's handset, including a multi-touch interface currently under development.

Meizu has not said whether it plans to sell the MiniOne outside of its native China. The device on show until today has been capable of quad-band GSM, allowing it to work in the US, but would immediately face copyright and patent infringement issues if sold there or in other countries where Apple does business.

Update: Meizu now says the dispute is known to have centered around "licenses" for one of its music players, and not the MiniOne. The company has reoccupied its booth and includes the MiniOne at the display, but not the offending device. The company has not mentioned which product is affected or whether the licenses related to copyright issues, although both its M3 and M6 players bear similarities to the first-generation iPod nano and fifth-generation iPod with video.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. danviento

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Dec 2005

    0

    Too late.

    The whole point of them being at the show was to get their face/prodcut in the press. They had to know they'd be kicked out eventually. Now that they've managed, the word is out, and they get free advertising in this form.

    Now that people know an attempted, cheaper, not carreir binding clone exists, this will make a small dent in actuals sales. The size we have yet to see.

  1. ViktorCode

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2006

    0

    counterfeit

    Those kind of things rarely seen outside of China for obvious reasons. I wonder if Chinese would prefer Meizu to iPhone if they had official iPhone sales there.

  1. gambit-7

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2001

    0

    danviento:

    Really? Do you honestly think it will make a dent? I know two types of people these days: people that want an iPhone, and people who don't. The people who want an iPhone, want an iPhone and no other phone matters. It's THAT polarized. I don't think Apple has anything to worry about, other than protecting their patents.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    0

    Re: counterfiet

    Those kind of things rarely seen outside of China for obvious reasons. I wonder if Chinese would prefer Meizu to iPhone if they had official iPhone sales there

    Um, yes. It would be way cheaper, and wouldn't require any plan (or whatever plan you wanted).

    Cheap counterfeit goods (be it fashion or technology) exist because the market is there, and people want you to think you can afford 'the real thing', or at least you have something that looks like the current 'in' toy.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    0

    re: danviento

    I know two types of people these days: people that want an iPhone, and people who don't.

    Well, guess you don't know that third type, the person who wants an iPhone but can't afford one, so, what the h***, I'll get a cheap knock-off so I can look like I'm part of the 'in' crowd.

    Remember, also, this is for China, and most likely only China.

  1. slider

    Mac Elite

    Joined: Oct 1999

    0

    Good

    What else can you do really. Sure, maybe you can buy one off the rollex guy, but by not allowing this company to sell in countries that have copyright (or whatever) laws, it makes it more difficult for the infringing company. And, this is not a rolex or purse which one could argue don't really go out of date, not like technology. Good luck getting any tech support for this item, but I'm sure this is a high quality item with a solid OS and won't need any tech support, right! rolleyes

  1. vasic

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2005

    0

    Not sure if it is so

    In most developing countries, cellphones often tend to be symbols of status and wealth. IPhone has attained this status globally, even though it is not even available there. Much like the fact that knock-off Chanel purses sell well only in the developed countries (USA mainly), where cheap is king, they actually don't sell that well in developing world. Percentage-wise, fake designer stuff is a serious problem in the US; it is not even a blip in places like the Balkan countries (Bulgaria, Serbia, Croatia, Romania...) or similar developing countries. People over there have little money, but they value it; they will buy the original, since they know the difference. Not to mention they will flaunt the originals; in most cases, people can tell the difference.

    Meizu may sell well, but it will not affect the iPhone. Not even in China, once it becomes legal (and probably not even now, while it's still not officially there).

  1. vasic

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2005

    0

    Knock-offs in USA

    On the subject of fakes, last weekend, I was in NYC Chinatown. You'd be amazed at the number of fake 2nd generation Nanos, fake touches, as well as fake iPhones (not sure if it's Meizu or some other Chinese brand)! They sell them in stores! These stores are not fly-by-night operations; Some of them have been in business continuously for at least 15 years (that I know of). I'm really curious why Apple tolerates this, as I doubt not this is not unknown. These are all 'General Merchandise' types of stores, that sell cheap stuff of all sorts: portable CD players, blank tapes/CDs, batteries/chargers, hand tools, p*** (tapes/DVDs), rice cookers, home electronics, etc, etc... You by this knockoff there, you get a receipt, warranty, everything! Apparently, it's legal, as nobody is challenging it yet.

  1. nat

    Junior Member

    Joined: Mar 2002

    0

    what?

    "I know two types of people these days: people that want an iPhone, and people who don't. "

    "Well, guess you don't know that third type, the person who wants an iPhone but can't afford one, so, what the h***, I'll get a cheap knock-off so I can look like I'm part of the 'in' crowd. "

    And how exactly does people who want an iPhone and can't afford it not fall into the category of people who want an iPhone?

    "in crowd"? More social and intellectual pretension from you?

  1. notehead

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2001

    0

    in NYC

    vasic, I've seen them too, but they are most definitely NOT legal goods. There are busts every once in a while, but most people seem to feel that "arrangements" have been made between the vendors and the cops, who, let's face it, have plenty else to do. I'd be curious to know what actually happens if you try to get warranty service on a piece of knock-off gear.

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