Korean music player price war prompts ‘patriotic’ marketing by Korean firms

“As Apple Korea hits the market with new products and drastically slashed prices, local firms are busy formulating responses including ‘patriotic’ marketing. In a newspaper advertisement marking the March 1 Independence Movement Day on Tuesday, Reigncom asks, ‘Does shouting ‘mansei’ buck-naked make Korea independent? U.S. firms are sweeping up most of the world’s HDD-type MP3 player market… As a sovereign MP3 state, we could not simply sit back and watch.’ Under the image of a Korean flag, it goes on, ‘After spending countless nights in the research room, we’ve finally produced a precious son for the world market… There will be many difficulties, but we are not afraid.’ Reigncom declared itself determined to face Apple’s offensive, saying, ‘We are the descendents of martyrs who braved bullets and swords to bring about independence to the cry of ‘mansei,”” The Chosun Ilbo reports.

“‘Apple has stepped up an offensive to kill local MP3 manufacturers,’ a Reigncom official said. ‘So we placed the advertisement to coincide with March 1 Independence Movement Day,'” The Chosun Ilbo reports. “…Local companies are struggling to keep up with Apple’s price cuts on HDD products… ‘Apple has started a large-scale price war, but we have no effective response,’ an industry insider said. ‘Big companies like Samsung Electronics and LGE could fend off Apple’s offensive, but small and medium-sized companies will be in trouble if the situation continues.'”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We guess hiring the porn star Jenna Jameson as spokesperson didn’t work as well as they had hoped. Some of these companies are already up the iRiver without a paddle. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.) It’s desperation time, so trot out the flag as a last resort and pray to God that it delays the inevitable.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
iRiver bows to Apple’s iPod shuffle, slashes MP3 flash-based player prices up to 25 percent – January 31, 2005
iRiver hires U.S. porn starlet Jenna Jameson to promote portable media players – January 18, 2005
Portable digital device maker iRiver bites into Apple (literally) via website – January 18, 2005
iRiver CEO on Apple iPod shuffle: ‘It will be very difficult for users to find their favorite songs’ – January 17, 2005
iRiver President: Apple can keep the ‘iPod crown,’ we want the ‘entertainment crown’ – April 30, 2004
Microsoft poised to release ‘iPod killer,’ enlists Creative, iRiver, Napster, others – March 17, 2004
New iRiver flash-memory player: one-eighth the capacity of Apple’s ‘iPod mini’ for US$80 more – February 09, 2004


  1. It is disrespecting if you say you are going to banish those pop-under ads and they still pop under. How do I surf the Internet? I use Safari with pop-up disabled. I never complained about banner ads and even during the initial phase of pop-under ads to let websites deal with them first. My self-importance is fine, thank you for asking. If you don’t consider yourself important, that is your own business.

    Pop Under Killer,
    Thank you very much. I indeed missed it. MDN, thanks for providing an opt-out. I take back what I said. I suggest you place a highly visible link to this policy for other users too.

  2. Hey nobody:
    “My self-importance is fine, thank you for asking. If you don’t consider yourself important, that is your own business.” > guess your name says it all.

    “I suggest you place a highly visible link to this policy for other users too.” > you mean for all those other important nobodies who first start complaining before checking …

  3. But Korea has no problems dumping POS cars in the USA?
    God, It’s about time an American company took out these cheap, third-world bastards who use kids and desperate workers for $3 a day.
    Go Apple, rock on iPod.


  4. somebody: it’s not really asian imperialism, but more of a misdirected or misguided patriotism that really shames the once proud history of korea’s culture. but then, koreans love bringing up “descendents of martyrs who braved bullets and swords to bring about independence” while their history (even until recently) showed the exact opposite–revisionsim, military dictatorship, poor civil/human rights, etc. It’s laughable.

  5. i should add that people should buy ipods or iriver because it fits their needs/desires… not because it’s more patriotic. since when apple/iriver (multinational companies) eqiuate to patritic feelings?

  6. God it’s bloody insulting that iRiver disrespects the Koreans so much they think they’re this stupid. Buy a worse product because it’s your patriotic duty?

    Truly insulting to Koreans.

  7. That’s the beauty of this country, the real entrepreneurs stop bitching and start doing something.

    Tired of all these crybabies, it’s time to start doing new things.

    And Korea is not a 3rd world country.

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