updated 08:10 pm EST, Wed November 24, 2010
M9 now to run Android, but still copying Apple
Meizu CEO Jack Wong, in an online chat, has claimed that Apple sent a vice president to meet with the company over the M8, Meizu's previous attempt to capitalize on Apple's success in China. After Apple successfully halted sales of the M8, the company announced that their latest model, the M9, would move to an Android platform and customize the OS to differentiate itself more from Apple's products, while still borrowing from Apple for the hardware design.
"Apple going back and forth [on negotiations with Meizu over the M8] made me angry, but I was even more mad at the media saying that I'm doing this as a PR trick," said Wong in (translated) remarks, responding to a question about Apple's role in stopping the M8. "The government of Zhuhai has helped us take this issue to the Provincial IP Office in Guangzhou to discuss with issue with Apple," he added, but didn't actually address the question directly or name the vice president Apple allegedly sent.
The M9 is expected to go on sale in China in mid-December running a customized version of Android v2.2.
Apple's recent patent awards on the hardware design of the iPhone 4 and iPad may further hinder Meizu if they intend to continue mimicking Apple's hardware designs, but Wong seems confident that the M9 will be successful -- although his response to a questioner about the lack of TV ads was translated to "Little child, we barely have money to produce the Meizu M9. How about we increase the price of the M9 by several hundred [Yuan] so you can support our TV ads?" [via MeizuMe]