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eOne to be redesigned admits Japanese distributor

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Japanese PC vendor Sotec said yesterday that it will continue to offer eMachines' eOne consumer-oriented computer -- but from next month the machine it offers will be a remodelled version that looks rather less like Apple's iMac than the current one does. The company's announcement, made by director of planning Masayasu Ozeki, is a tacit admission of the validity of Apple's claim that the eOne's designers ripped off the look and feel of the iMac -- a claim that's the subject of a writ against Sotec. Indeed, the move came a day after the Tokyo District Court imposed a preliminary ban on sales of the eOne in Japan while it considers the merits of Apple's case. The eOne was released on Japan last July at a price point around 80 per cent of the iMac's. That same month, Apple lawyers fired of lawsuits against eMachines and its backers, Korean Data Systems and Trigem with the intention of first blocking the eOne's sale and distribution in the US, and then with wresting actual and punitive damages from the three companies. Soon after, in August, Apple issued a similar suit against Sotec in Japan. The Mac maker has also issued a writ against Daewoo and FuturePower over their own iMac-alike, the ePower. ®

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