‘iBox’ Mac third-party clone about to go into production

“A Minnesota man has plans to launch his own Macintosh-manufacturing business, building a low-cost, upgradeable Mac called the iBox.”

“John Fraser, a 21-year-old engineer from Chanhassen, Minnesota, is finalizing the design for his flat ‘pizzabox’ Mac and hopes to go into production in three to four months. If successful, Fraser will be the first third party to make a Mac since Apple shut down its three-year experiment in clone licensing in 1997.”

“Unlike the world of Windows PCs, which has many hardware makers, Apple is the only company making Macs. Apple doesn’t license its operating system to outside hardware manufacturers.”

“Fraser hopes to sidestep the licensing issues by using older, off-the-shelf parts made by Apple and sold to computer repair outfits as spare parts. He will use Apple-made motherboards preloaded with Macintosh ROMs — the vital piece of hardware-cum-software that makes a Mac a Mac. Customers will supply their own Mac operating system.”

“However, Fraser may still face legal problems with patents and trademarks, legal experts said. Apple is notoriously protective of its intellectual property, and has not hesitated to go after hardware manufacturers, software publishers and websites for infringement.”

“Fraser hasn’t yet contacted Apple, and the company didn’t respond to requests for comment.”

“Fraser has already struck a deal to buy parts from Other World Computing, a Mac parts and peripherals supplier. OWC said it may sell Fraser’s systems through its website.”

“‘I think it has great promise,’ said Larry O’Connor, OWC’s founder and CEO. “Mac users like unique and interesting things, and this has definitely got people’s attention. There’s definitely interest in what he’s doing,'” reports Leander Kahney for Wired News. Full article here.


Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.