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iPod look alike product

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
Just saw this on Macminute:

e.Digital, the company that created the Treo mp3 player (ugh) has made a press release about a new product that looks sorta like the iPod. The Odyssey Jukebox (still looks ugly but it's shape/button positioning looks more like the iPod) has a 20 GB hard drive, voice navigation, fm tuner, and the ability to do voice-recording. USB 2 connection.

<a href="http://www.edig.com/news/releases/pr072202.html" target="_blank">Odyssey Jukebox</a>
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post #2 of 34
looks like an iPod that got hit with an ugly stick to me.
post #3 of 34
Wow, that thing is a total copy of the iPod, just in metal instead of white plastic. I mean, it looks exactly like an iPod with a new skin. Actually it's one of the few Apple-imitations that looks okay. I think the iPod looks better, but at least this one isn't over-styled like many.

Even the UI is the same! Maybe Apple Legal is going to get on this one... if not for the physical appearance then for the "look and feel" of the UI. We'll have to see.
post #4 of 34
apple might go after them...looks alittle too similar, even the program in the screen looks like the iPod's navigation...g
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it's all fun till somebody loses an eye
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post #5 of 34
Thread Starter 
Yeah, a big ugly stick <img src="graemlins/lol.gif" border="0" alt="[Laughing]" />
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post #6 of 34
Wow. This is interesting. I wonder if it's the same HD as the iPod?

If any mod sees this, please move to the Digital Hub forum. Thanks.
post #7 of 34
Its the first of the iPod wannabe's
post #8 of 34
[quote]Originally posted by xionja:
<strong>Its the first of the iPod wannabe's</strong><hr></blockquote>

More like an iPod Shouldabin.

FM and Microphone are mega-mega improvements.
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post #9 of 34
Yes, I put good money on the table that Apple's Legal Panzer division is rolling.

Screed
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post #10 of 34
i'm sorry, but what the hell are they going to sue about?

you use text menus to navigate, we did that first!

or "you have a small form factor, that was our idea"

fact is these mp3 players are built around the drives they contain. if the drive is a specific shape, any mp3 player holding that drive will have specific size limitations. the smaller you make the device, the more it will conform to the shape of the HD inside.

as for "look and feel" that's total crap.

contextual menus have been around for ages. don't try to tell me that Apple owns the look and feel of using text to navigate through a list.

then there's the USB 2.0 and firewire bit. all nice, industry standards. again, nothing unique there.

they could even have a scroll wheel and get away with it. why? 'cause you can't have a "look and feel" on a scroll wheel. it happens to be a very convienient way to go through a lot of files. that's why they're on mice.

it's like saying that Jeep copied Ford with the steering wheel.

sheesh.

apple legal won't even burp on this one, IMO
post #11 of 34
eMachines didn't think their iMac rip-off would be stopped, but it was. The whole form factor is obviously a copy of the iPod. Yes, you can't stop people from using a screen, or scroll wheel or whatever. But when the object looks almost exactly like another one and is obviously designed to confuse or mislead... well, Apple DOES have a right to sue. Interesting that with all the recent MP3 players coming out few if any have Firewire.
Things Ain't What They Seem!
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post #12 of 34
yes, but if a device is built around an internal HD that is a limiting factor. if you're trying to make something as small and compact as possible, the internal HD in this case is largest item you have to build around.

you have no choice but to make it that size/shape.

as for the e-machines, i believe the product was similarly colored, which is where you get toasted. no reason to have something be the exact same color, especially bondi blue. (as opposed to the then typical beige)

apple won that one because they tried to make it look like an iMac when they didn't have to. the coloration was a big factor.

they won't be able to do anything about this one.
post #13 of 34
wow... voice navigation and FM tuner... can't wait for the next ipod...
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post #14 of 34
[quote]Originally posted by MacsRGood4U:
<strong>...Interesting that with all the recent MP3 players coming out few if any have Firewire.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Why should they ?

Bill Gates wants it that way.

And what Bill Gates wants... Bill Gates gets. <img src="graemlins/lol.gif" border="0" alt="[Laughing]" />
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post #15 of 34
Does look like the iPod only better. I like the blue lighted screen better than the whtish looking iPods.

I agree that I dont like imitators either.
post #16 of 34
Many will see this as a copy of the iPod, but it's just simply competition. It will force apple to continue to make their product stronger and better than anything else on the market. What's so wrong a little competition, Apple's not Microsoft? The better product will hopefully prevail and be stronger because of it.

[ 07-22-2002: Message edited by: Eric Reid ]</p>
post #17 of 34
Before the iPod, MP3 players were available in many varied designs. They still are. There's a slew of products out there that don't look like the iPod. Why eDigital decided all of a sudden to make their product look similar is, well, fishy. The HD has absolutely no relationship to what the product will look like. In the end, it's up to the lawyers to decide if an infringement applies here. I think Apple will make some kind of announcement.

[ 07-22-2002: Message edited by: MacsRGood4U ]</p>
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post #18 of 34
The eMachine had a similar form factor. The color was partially the same but not completely. It was the form factor that caused them to discontinue it after Apple sued. That is why I believe Apple will persue this.
Things Ain't What They Seem!
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post #19 of 34
[quote]Before the iPod, MP3 players were available in many varied designs. They still are. There's a slew of products out there that don't look like the iPod. Why eDigital decided all of a sudden to make their product look similar is, well, fishy. The HD has absolutely no relationship to what the product will look like.<hr></blockquote>

ok, i'll try this again.

yes, there are mp3 players of many different sizes.

however, the smallest, high capacity mp3 players will be based entirely around the drive that's inside them.

it's just like how all portable cd players are basically the same shape. they all have to be able to fit a CD in them. there's no way around that.

along the same lines, all mp3 players using small internal HD's have to be able to fit that HD inside them.

therefore, they can be no smaller than the HD, and have to be able to fit the HD inside. that give you a form factor approximately the same shape as a deck of cards, no matter who you are.

just like portable cd players all have a roundish look to them because of the cd's that have to fit inside them.

there's nothing here that's copying so much as the laws of physics demand that these mp3 players must be a certain size to fit their drives.

[ 07-22-2002: Message edited by: alcimedes ]</p>
post #20 of 34
Okay, actually it looks like alcimedes has a point. All PCs these days look the same. No one's suing anyone over that.

I do believe that Apple could stand some real competition now and then, especially with products like the iPod that they're not forced to update as often.

And since text-based OSes all have to be so similar, I couldn't see any real grounds for saying that they were copying. If the thing was white encased in lucite with stainless steel on the back, then maybe it would be considered a copy.
post #21 of 34

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post #22 of 34
Combine the button layout, the menu system, the port layout, and I think Apple would have a compelling case.
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post #23 of 34
if i hadn't already seen 100 VCR/DVD player button layouts like that, maybe.

i'm telling you, there's nothing that unique about the iPod. it's about as straight forward as it could possibly be. that's what makes it great.

for something else to copy it, it only needs to be standard across the board.

1. standard menu options. (it syncs with iTunes, so of course it's going to be similar there)

2. smallest possible form factor with the internal drive.

again, similar to the iPod, but only because it's the smallest possible design around that HD. not sure what else they could do, other than make their product unusually large, which would be a bit pointless.

3. circular button layout. here it's a little more like copying in my mind, but again nothing unique on the iPod either. basically half of all the DVD remotes i've seen use some combination of a scroll wheel and/or buttons around it for play, pause etc. again, it's a common layout on the iPod, that is also adopted by a competing product. if you can show me the iPod is unique in this layout, i might buy it, but it's not.









again, you are limited by the available space after including the LCD screen. The HD limits total size, the LDC cuts down on what's there, then you only have so much room for controls. standard control sets have to fit within a small area, so anything that's left will have to look similar.

4. well, the ports maybe. again, it's probably a factor of where the internal HD has inputs that's the major factor as to where the firewire or USB 2.0 plugs in. nothing but simple engineering again.

i think the only way you can believe apple has a claim here is if you think they have rights to the internal HD's, upon which everything else is based. i'm sure they don't though.

dunno, i'm just not seeing it. it's as different as it can be while still being compact and functional. don't think apple has a patent on that.

[ 07-22-2002: Message edited by: alcimedes ]</p>
post #24 of 34
Apple has to sue they just gotta!
APPLE HAS TO SUE! AND MAKE THEIR MONEY!
SCREW THOSE PEOPLE. IF this is Priced well enough, Apple is going to lose all the money there were going to make on the PC version of the iPOD <img src="graemlins/smokin.gif" border="0" alt="[Chilling]" /> <img src="graemlins/surprised.gif" border="0" alt="[Surprised]" /> <img src="graemlins/smokin.gif" border="0" alt="[Chilling]" />
post #25 of 34
[quote]Originally posted by Nebagakid:
<strong>Apple has to sue they just gotta!
APPLE HAS TO SUE! AND MAKE THEIR MONEY!
SCREW THOSE PEOPLE. IF this is Priced well enough, Apple is going to lose all the money there were going to make on the PC version of the iPOD <img src="graemlins/smokin.gif" border="0" alt="[Chilling]" /> <img src="graemlins/surprised.gif" border="0" alt="[Surprised]" /> <img src="graemlins/smokin.gif" border="0" alt="[Chilling]" /> </strong><hr></blockquote>

$350 for the 20 gig version <img src="graemlins/hmmm.gif" border="0" alt="[Hmmm]" /> makes me think twice about getting a new iPod ...
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post #26 of 34
the thing that makes it over the top is the fact that it has the same ehading as the iPod and the screen is the EXACT SAME SIZE and the same backlight, etc... if you saw both of them with the lights off and just the backlights on, you would think they are the same machines... <img src="graemlins/bugeye.gif" border="0" alt="[Skeptical]" /> SOMETHING has to be off...
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post #27 of 34
[quote]Originally posted by Paul:
<strong>

$350 for the 20 gig version <img src="graemlins/hmmm.gif" border="0" alt="[Hmmm]" /> makes me think twice about getting a new iPod ...</strong><hr></blockquote>

Well don't hold your breath. From slashdot:

Many, many people see e.digital as being nothing more than a pump-and-dump penny stock scam, and there certainly is enough evidence to back it up.
This article barely touches the depth of shady deals this company is engaged in:
<a href="http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/business/bauder" target="_blank">http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/business/bauder</a> /20020707-9999_1b7bauder.html [signonsandiego.com]
They've announced several vaporware mp3 players, which caused a stock pump, and when nothing panned out the 'dump' came and the stock once again dropped. The few units they were able to manufacture are now being liquidated on ebay and various liquidator companies.
Most recently, the company has engaged in extremely questionable financial arrangements in order to stay afloat - they recently took out a $1.5 million loan with 100% of their company's assets as colatteral, to a shady off-shore entity, in a clear case of death-spiral financing.
This company currently has several hundred million outstanding shares, and is still issuing more.
The principals of the company have made something of a career out of pump-and-dump companies - look at the histories of Patriot Scientific (java procesor hype) and ATC (hyped audio technology). They're also involved in promoting movies and solo-flying machines. All the same gang. Decades of scam companies, lies and misleading statements to shareholders, and never once a real product or profits.
E.Digital does not deserve in any way to get this kind of exposure on slashdot.
(Disclaimer: I have never owned any shares, but I do know several people who were hoodwinked into purchasing shares, and lost a huge amount of money.)
post #28 of 34
Well then, if what Nebrie says is true, it could be very well that their player is merely an iPod gone through some massive photoshoppin'..... if you look closely at it some parts do not look real (though the same goes for the iPod on Apple's site)...
post #29 of 34
Alcimedes, while the general layout of those remote control buttons are vaguely similar to the iPod's, they are nowhere near as similar to the iPod as the e.Digital device.

On one hand, yes, similar devices that must follow the same size and technical requirements will end up looking very similar, especially if the best solution has already been found. The best solution being the simplest and most elegant. However, one mustn't underestimate the work that goes into creating this solution. Maybe this is something that's destined to go the way of the "industry standard" mp3 player design, or maybe not. A lot of desktop CD players look alike, but no one gets sued over these looks.

In my mind, simple and elegant solutions are often the most visceral. Their designs are so brilliantly simple that their effects are infectious - once you see it, you can't imagine why you'd design an mp3 player that looks otherwise, for example. Still, and I think this is important to note, e.Digital doesn't seem to have tried very hard for originality here.
post #30 of 34
Does everything in the Apple universe revolve around superficial appearance? The first several posts in this thread were only comments about the devices appearance. I am still waiting for a relevant discussion about this units features. In order for this thing to be a copy of the iPod, it would have to shed many cool and useful features and raise its price by $150.00.

Some of you rip into the products look. Others, the company that designed it. Now the prevalent discussion is whether or not Apple should sue it out of existence. THE SPECS ARE AWESOME!

I am convinced that the main reason that USB 2.0 will not show up on the Mac is to keep products like this one from being able to compete with the iPod cash cow. With USB 2.0, a world of great digital devices opens up for the Mac users. As long as FW remains the only high-speed solution for the Mac, then the iPod, and whatever else Apple releases along those lines, is safe.

[ 07-23-2002: Message edited by: Mac Voyer ]</p>
Apple has no competition. Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product gives the distinct impression that, Where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it...
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Apple has no competition. Every commercial product which competes directly with an Apple product gives the distinct impression that, Where it is original, it is not good, and where it is good, it...
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post #31 of 34
Thread Starter 
This product does have several nice features, I would've loved to see something like an FM tuner (better yet, AM/FM tuner) or microphone for voice recording in the recent iPod revision. It will find a niche I assume in the PC market, if it is marketed properly. However, their past mp3 players looked horrid and I don't think many people bought them. I believe USB 2 products are backwards-compatible with regular USB ports, just that they transfer at the slower USB speed. If that's true, then just about every PC owner could use this without having to spend another $30 on a firewire card.

I think the voice navigation is crap, I still don't quite understand how voice navigation makes things faster/easier for the majority of people. Overall, it's an okay product, looks like crap though, I don't think it'll make too much of a difference whether Apple files a lawsuit or not, I still don't see this Odyssey Jukebox selling well. The iPod is still better in terms of ease of use, and there's other products that already offer mp3 playing and voice recording from larger companies on the PC side. Still, I wouldn't mind seeing Apple try to integrate more features into the iPod, having a radio tuner or the ability to record stuff would be awesome.
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post #32 of 34
I'm at a loss for words. What shit.

[ 07-23-2002: Message edited by: serrano ]</p>
post #33 of 34
Hehe, just noticed that this has already been mentioned....

Has anybody taken a close look at the large product shot at e.Digital's website? <a href="http://www.edig.com/images/logos/Odyssey1000FINAL.tif" target="_blank">Get it Here</a> I read something about it on a thread somewhere (can't remember where) and downloaded it. After looking at it up close in PS, I'm *quite* sure it is nothing more than a Photoshopped iPod. The Hold button in the top left of the picture is EXACTLY the same as the iPods (even with the orange color underneath when it's not on hold) The other side has the same exact switch but with what looks like a blurry Firewire symbol...
\tAlso, the control ring (or whatever you want to call it) isn't centered very well. You would think that the bottom button would be parallel to the bottom of the case, but the button is just slightly turned. I don't know... This just suggests further that the company is a hoax...

[ 07-29-2002: Message edited by: mbezzo ]</p>
post #34 of 34
Thread Starter 
The company's not a hoax, they've released mp3 players in the past... i.e. the Treo, which looked like crap and I imagine didn't sell well.
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