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iPod shuffle clone introduced

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By LC Angell

Contributing Editor
Published: Thursday, March 10, 2005
News Categories: iPod shuffle

pic LuxPro, a Taiwan-based maker of digital audio products, has introduced what can only be described as a blatant rip-off of Apple’s iPod shuffle. LuxPro’s “Super shuffle,” which is being shown this week at the CeBIT conference in Germany, is nearly identical to the iPod shuffle in every way—from its form factor to its name and advertising.

Made from the same white plastic and featuring the same control pad as the iPod shuffle, the Super shuffle is also the exact length (3.3”) and width (0.99”) as the iPod shuffle. The flash memory-based Super shuffle is a little thicker (0.38”) than the iPod shuffle (0.33”), but offers an FM tuner and voice recorder, which the Apple device lacks.

LuxPro’s music player weighs in at the same as the iPod (.78 ounce), offers the same USB 2.0 connectivity and charging, and even copies the iPod shuffle’s backside slider switch and battery light indicator. The Super shuffle boasts two slider switches, apparently one is needed for general use and one is needed for the extra FM and recording features. The LuxPro product offers MP3, WAV, and WMA support.

Like the iPod shuffle, the Super shuffle is offered only in 512MB and 1GB sizes, and works with both Windows and Mac OS X. Pricing and availability were not immediately available. However, German iPod site iPodLife has provided iLounge with a handful of photos of the device and its advertising at CeBIT, which show that LuxPro is not only cloning Apple’s low-cost player, but is also replicating its well-known silhouette ads.

Click “Read more” for large photos of the Super shuffle and an Apple-like poster.

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Comments

61

I really want one. They’re great! Long live LuxPro for enhancing my iShuffle experience.

Posted by Josie in UK on March 10, 2005 at 1:27 PM (PDT)

62

OMG you mean I have to spend HUNDREDS OF US DOLLARS on a Media Center PC in order to get basic iPod like functions!

Did you even *follow* the link before shooting off your mouth?

I am not talking about those clunky Windows ReplayTV wannabes, I am talking about the best damn media jukebox software out there. Media Center invented advanced SmartLists and its implementation remains light years ahead of the rather basic, hardly configurable iTunes implementation.

Posted by Demosthenes on March 10, 2005 at 1:45 PM (PDT)

63

WOW! If they sell that thing for less than $99 I’d buy it! LOL! :D

Posted by FallN in New York, NY on March 10, 2005 at 1:49 PM (PDT)

64

Actually you could use iTunes with this player.  Since iTunes is free for downloading, the user could encode their music to MP3 and drag and drop onto this player.  That’s what I was doing with my MPIO MP3 player before I got a Shuffle.

I see this knockoff as just another MP3 player.  I for one am not going to run out and get one.  If you look at all the MP3 players out there though, a ton of em are made in that part of the World.  Korea, Taiwan, China, etc. 

Posted by mele on March 10, 2005 at 1:50 PM (PDT)

65

Ok I stand corrected then; MULTIPLES OF TENs OF US DOLLARS on a Software Media Player. Then….

That’s even worse then when you consider that, Apple gives it’s iTunes Software away for free!!!

Posted by Ichijoe in Deutschland on March 10, 2005 at 1:54 PM (PDT)

66

I’m dead serious. How much is it and where can I buy one. LOL!

Posted by FallN in New York, NY on March 10, 2005 at 1:54 PM (PDT)

67

Well… now seeing the pathetic 4 hour battery… I’ll buy it if it’s $49 and not a penny more. That’s a THIRD of the battery life of the real Apple Shuffle… I don’t know. If they ask for about the same amount as a Shuffle then there’s not reason for me to buy that knockoff since it would crap out on my within 4 hours of use. Not good. FM radio or not, 4 hours is pathetic!

Posted by FallN in New York, NY on March 10, 2005 at 2:11 PM (PDT)

68

haha am i the only who thinks this Luxpro shuffle is actually better than than apples! I want one NOW! smile

Posted by b6662966 on March 10, 2005 at 2:22 PM (PDT)

69

I think you misread something.

Maximum Playing Time
12 hours (128Kbps, MP3)

Maximum Recording Time
MX-575D:36 hours (8KHz, 32Kbps)
MX-1075D:72 hours (8KHz, 32Kbps)

Full-charge Time
About 4 hours (2-hour fast-charge to 80% capacity)

So that’s one answer as to the Recording Times.

Posted by Ichijoe in Deutschland on March 10, 2005 at 2:30 PM (PDT)

70

that’s what apple gets for releasing a cheap, featureless, designless, white plastic flash player and putting the ipod name on it…

Posted by petro on March 10, 2005 at 3:05 PM (PDT)

71

“copyright laws apply specifically to certain countries, the ones that choose to care.”

Um, copyright protection is provided globally because of international conventions…. Rome and Berne I believe? Basically you’re protected if you’re in a WTO country (there are 147 of them I think)

But this is besides the point, because this is more of a patent or a design infringement than anything to do with copyright.

Posted by Popjunkie in Singapore on March 10, 2005 at 3:10 PM (PDT)

72

haha i liek this better than the original shuffle! smile

Posted by b6662966 on March 10, 2005 at 3:27 PM (PDT)

73

Looks like they have found a use for all the knackered Apple Earbuds which found their way into the bin - I suppose if you’re going to steal a design you may as well go the whole hog….

Posted by MadPict in UK on March 10, 2005 at 3:30 PM (PDT)

74

Anyone with a rudimentary understanding of patent, copyright and trademark laws can see that this thing probably violates all three.

Not only is the physical design IDENTICAL to the original (except for the additional control on the back), but they’ve even stolen the name of the product and its promotional material.

It seems that they are probably hoping that Apple will sue them and get them lots of publicity, then tie the whole thing up in the international courts. meanwhile they are selling them in China and other places where international copyrights and trademarks are not generally honored.

It will be interesting to see where this goes.

Also, I agree that putting an FM receiver and voice recorder in the Shuffle is not necessarily a good idea. I’m sure the reception on this thing will SUCK… not to mention, the sound quality of any voice recorder that will fit in this thing has got to be absolutely horrid.

Posted by newstetter on March 10, 2005 at 3:49 PM (PDT)

75

Are you guys SURE this is not a hoax? I don’t care if it was “introduced” at CBIT.. Where else could you get this much airplay?

But just in case…

Many US companies have lawyers based in China to combat just this issue, so don’t think for a minute that the Chinese will get away with this kind of blatant copyright infringement. There are many lawyers at Apple’s disposal, I’m sure, that are fully versed in Chinese patent law.

Posted by Durandal on March 10, 2005 at 4:08 PM (PDT)

76

Apple should stop these guys from ever bringing these things into the market lest they dilute the ipod Shuffle’s appeal. After all, designs are protected by patent/copyright laws.

These guys at Luxpro were crazy to even display it at CeBIT.  You expect these knockoffs to silent come to market, without even a mention of their origin, not trumpeting their presence and inviting lawsuits…

Posted by WilliamC in Philippines on March 10, 2005 at 4:39 PM (PDT)

77

To all those who compliment the copy because it points out lacking features and laziness of the iPod shuffle:

This thing wasn’t made as a statement against apple, it was meant to mimic it…
With or without extra features, it is trying to trick people.

Steve Jobs will own this company.

Posted by rubecious on March 10, 2005 at 4:47 PM (PDT)

78

FOR ALL WHO ASKED WHY WAS AN FM RADIO NOT PLACED IN THE SHUFFLE!.......

I read a few weeks ago from an interview of Steve Jobs and one of the questions asked was why the iPod did not have an fm receiver and his answer was something like radio is not always clear in reception and he makes products that always work.

Something in that neighborhood. I forgot the word for word.

Now my take on it is sure they could have added fm radio but they didnt because people would listen to the FM more than not resulting in less actual music on the player resulting in less iTunes sales.

Steve Jobs is a brilliant man and he sees this stuff far ahead of his actions. I know a lot about him after reading over 300 pages on the man. Interesting guy.

Bad Steve, Good Steve. smile

Posted by AppleFreak on March 10, 2005 at 5:27 PM (PDT)

79

I know Apple’s lawyers will have some fun with this though, ha! I feel bad for the guys who made this. It will soon be all over.

Oh wait, Apple will make a deal with them to make it an easy deal. Here is $100,000 or a lifetime suppy to Apple products and stop selling your product.

Geez I should make a mac mini replica, start selling it and then I could get free Apple products for life. wooooo

Posted by AppleFreak on March 10, 2005 at 5:29 PM (PDT)

80

hmmm… “super shuffle”?  they should have called it “superior shuffle”.  in my own opinion, apple opened the gates for copycats when they released the cheap plastic product with crappy design and no advanced feautures—it’s begging to get ripped off, easy to reproduce, and simply improved upon.  the super shuffle is a superior product.

Posted by petro on March 10, 2005 at 6:22 PM (PDT)

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