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Apple has, unusually, taken the gloves off for a whack at Korea’s fifth-largest MP3 maker, Iops.

In the snake pit that is the personal audio market, Apple rarely seems to swipe at its competitors. Apple has, however, taken the gloves off for a whack at, unusually, Korea’s fifth-largest MP3 maker, Iops, reports The Korea Times.

Apple reportedly complained Iops Jock and Z3c models copy the iPod mini and threatened a lawsuit lest it cease sales. Apple reportedly additionally demanded compensation for lost sales and an official apology be printed in more than two South Korean daily newspapers.

Iops refuted the accusation, saying that the models are creations of its  own research and development and responded that “Apple has an aggressive low-price policy in South Korea, and so do we. It seems that they have monitored the market situation and picked us as a target.”

Apple had over half of the worldwide MP3 player market share in 2005. But it is not so successful in South Korea, where it was the fourth largest seller, with an 8.6-percent share. Iops’s share is 4.8 percent.

The iPod mini

The Iops Jock

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