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Cellphones Handhelds Iphone Media (Apple) Apple

Chinese 'Apple Peel' Turns iPods Into iPhones 178

Posted by timothy
from the cheap-data-is-the-key dept.
angry tapir writes "The Apple Peel 520, a Chinese-developed product that drew the media's attention for being able to turn an iPod Touch into an iPhone-like device, is coming to America. The add-on device, which just went on sale in China, has been billed as a more affordable option for users wanting to get their hands on an iPhone, but lacking the budget."
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Chinese 'Apple Peel' Turns iPods Into iPhones

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @04:19AM (#33731904)

    Consider:

    "If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."
    - Isaac Newton

    I am not condoning massive copyright infringement, but consider that the Chinese electronics industry is much, much more vibrant in terms of consumer options than any Western market. Perhaps this is not entirely a bad thing.

  • by Thanshin (1188877) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @04:35AM (#33731978)

    Funny, I always said that is a case of them doing whatever the hell they please because they have no appreciation for the hard work of others.

    Because, as we all know, Apple developed their products from scratch. They started with the fire, then the hardened wooden spear, etc. Up to the iPhone.

  • by myowntrueself (607117) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @04:37AM (#33731986)

    I get the feeling that China values innovation far more than the USA does.

  • by FuckingNickName (1362625) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @04:45AM (#33732028) Journal

    Wait, are you saying that tethering your iPod Touch (or any other TCP/IP client) to some sort of mobile network gateway is, "a case of [those pesky Chinese] doing whatever the hell they please because they have no appreciation for the hard work of [Apple]"?

    The biggest differentiator between an iPhone and an iPod Touch is the 3G radio. Guess who didn't develop GSM tech, but doesn't adhere to the licensing terms offered by the developer? I guess it's a case of [Apple] doing whatever the hell they please because they have no appreciation for the hard work of [Nokia].

  • by Der Huhn Teufel (688813) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @04:52AM (#33732066)
    China values imitation much more than the USA does.
  • by Mr. Freeman (933986) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @05:17AM (#33732176)
    This will work great... right up until apple releases a firmware upgrade that intentionally breaks it.
  • by jimicus (737525) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @05:32AM (#33732246)

    That's almost certainly what they'll do, and I'll tell you how they'll do it.

    They'll point out that iPhone, iPod and Apple are all trademarks of Apple Computer. If the distributors wish to continue selling their product, they'll have to sell it with a description along the lines of:

    "The new Peel device turns a well-known MP3 player into a telephone! But we can't tell you which MP3 player it is!".

    Wasn't a well-known parallel importer from Hong Kong closed down with a similar suit?

  • Re:It is a phone (Score:5, Insightful)

    by khchung (462899) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @05:43AM (#33732292) Journal

    only Apple can get away with selling a 'smartphone without a phone'.

    I recall something that was called "PDA" which seems to qualify quite well as a "smartphone without a phone", and quite a few companies like Palm, HP has been quite successfully selling those before smartphone became popular.

    I know it is trendy with moderators to bash Apple here, but at least try to bash for things they are actually guilty of, ok?

  • by Magada (741361) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @05:54AM (#33732350) Journal

    People were talking about Japan in the same disparaging terms during the early seventies. Ten years later those same people were all "japanese work ethic" this and "kaizen" that and "we must be saved from cheap, excellent, innovative Jap cars" the other.

  • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @06:40AM (#33732538)

    Well except for CPUs. Every desktop CPU is designed in the US (both AMD and Intel are there) and a large number are made in US fabs. But that's it. Oh well and graphics cards, nVidia designs their cards in the US (AMD in Canada). And ICs like A/D converters (Texas Instruments designs in the US). And airplanes, one of the two remaining major airline designers/manufacturers is Boeing, who is in the US. And search engines, both Google and Bing are developed in the US...

    Getting the point? The US actually innovates a hell of a lot. You find a great many new, high tech, things are developed in the US, even if they aren't built there.

    This is NOT an example of Chinese innovation, it is an example of the opposite. Apple did the innovating, to the extent there was some. The developed the platform, the OS, the UI, all of that stuff. This just adds a cellphone radio to the iPod Touch. That isn't innovative, that is what an iPhone is. Not saying it may not be nice for people but innovative it is not. They just bought off the shelf GSM parts and wrote an app (probably using Apple's development tools) to modify another off the shelf device to act just like yet another off the shelf device. Neat? Perhaps (though if iPhones are too expensive just get something else, seriously there are plenty of other good, maybe even better, smartphones out there). Innovative? Not hardly.

    Seriously, this hate on the US's industry shows nothing but your own ignorance of the actual markets. Do some research, if you actually care, and you'll discover that the US designs (and actually builds too) a whole lot of high tech, state of the art, shit. You'll discover China does not. Usually when they make somethign high tech, it was designed elsewhere and many of the parts are made elsewhere too.

    Like say you buy a Denon receiver. Very high tech gadget with lots of nifty features. Unless you buy the high end ones, it is made in China (the high end ones are made in Japan). However all of them are designed in Japan, China only does the assembly per Denon's specs. Also the DSPs, the heart of their capabilities, are designed by Analog Devices (USA) and fabbed at either their US or Irish fab. Their converters are designed and made by AKM Semiconductor in Japan. Their room correction software is designed by Audyssey Labs in the USA. It's video processing system was designed by IDT (USA) and made by TSMC (Taiwan).

    So while the label may say "Made in China," all that means is they assembled the parts. All the "innovation" went on in other countries.

    Go research it, if you care, but please stop spouting off if you aren't willing to.

  • ...and? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @06:48AM (#33732574)

    I never said China wouldn't change. My statement is on what the situation is, not what it will be. The original poster seems to have this idea, as do many online, that the US doesn't do anything. Nothing comes out of the US anymore except movies...

    Well that is completely false and it takes not much research to discover the fact that the US does tons of R&D, tons of innovation (and for that matter is still the world leader in manufactured goods, though China will overtake them by 2020 or sooner). It also doesn't take much research to reveal that China does not do hardly any innovation. Their economy is currently all about either building things to spec, or copying things.

    I am not judging that as a bad thing, just stating a fact.

    This is also particularity silly in this case, where it is something that is very non-innovative. They took a device designed by Apple, added to it off the shelf GSM components, and made it work like another device designed by Apple. That's fine, but innovation? Hardly. Innovation would be creating a new smartphone platform from scratch. This is just attempting to cash in on the fact that Apple sells an iPhone without the radio for significantly less than the cost of adding a radio. Business savvy, but not innovative.

  • Re:It is a phone (Score:2, Insightful)

    by FalcDot (1224920) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @07:15AM (#33732660)

    Except that my Touch needs to be recharged maybe once a week, depending on exactly how much I use it for gaming on the subway. My ordinary cell phone also lasts about a week on a charge. Yet if I were to combine both, I'd end up needing to recharge it every day. And I'd better have my charger around 'cause it might not last through the entire day.

  • Re:It is a phone (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @07:29AM (#33732706)

    only Apple can get away with selling a 'smartphone without a phone'.

    I recall something that was called "PDA" which seems to qualify quite well as a "smartphone without a phone", and quite a few companies like Palm, HP has been quite successfully selling those before smartphone became popular.

    I know it is trendy with moderators to bash Apple here, but at least try to bash for things they are actually guilty of, ok?

    Don't know about you but I haven't seen a PDA in years. They are not a viable product for anyone but Apple which is why the PDA makers have all either perished or added phone functionality to their product line.

  • by pr0nbot (313417) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @07:52AM (#33732810)

    This is an example of the kind of innovation that happens in the developing world, where ingenious, relatively low-tech, cheap solutions are found to problems that don't really exist in the developed world.

    The Economist had an article on this in the last year or so (and a stupid name for it that was irritating but would at least have helped me google it up for you).

  • Re:It is a phone (Score:4, Insightful)

    by joeyblades (785896) on Wednesday September 29, 2010 @10:16AM (#33734050)

    ... components that Apple left out of the Touch so that it could cash in on the low end of the market...

    This is so disengenuous as to be silly. Not everyone wants an iPhone. A lot of those people who don't want an iPhone might be in the market for a high end mp3 player. There are two different markets, ergo two different products. Yes, these products have a lot of synergy, but that's just good business.

    ... only Apple can get away with selling a 'smartphone without a phone'.

    If Apple didn't already have the iPod before they had the iPhone, your rant might actually sound clever. However, in light of actual history it just sounds like a lame rant.

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