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||IContain announces Amiga branded TVs, cell phones and computers (Update)|
When a certain Todd Kleperis contacted the Aminet team two days ago to "discuss your library of Amiga titles" and ask for "guidance as to how to work with the existing fan base", the initial reaction over at Aminet was confusion. According to Kleperis, his company IContain is operating from China and about to revive the Amiga line of electronics. Why he choose to use Aminet as his first contact with the actual Amiga scene was not explained though.
At icontainprotects.com, Kleperis' company is indeed advertising cell phones, tablet PCs, various types of TV screens aswell as all-in-one PCs with integrated monitors - all of them sporting prominent Amiga logos. Obviously these devices are third-party products which have been rebranded as Amiga products by IContain.
You can't actually buy these products from IContain though: The company is mainly operating in the socalled Rent-to-own business. Using devices developed by IContain, furniture or consumer electronics devices leased to end users by Rent-to-own providers can be tracked or even remotely disabled should the customer stop paying its fees in time.
Asked about the reason for introducing a line of Amiga products, Kleperis told us that he was approached by a Rent-to-own provider that intended to buy not only the tracking technology from his company but also the actual consumer electronics - provided IContain could offer a "branded solution". As Amiga "used to be all about innovation in the past" (Kleperis) and other businesses like Lenovo or Sony were not interested in cooperation, Kleperis decided to offer Amiga branded devices.
We were told that the licensing deal was "cut just recently by the executor of an estate", that product just started shipping and that we should expect "worldwide press" soon. The IContain president would neither give any further information nor comment our hints that another company has already announced various Amiga products.
Interestingly, while Leo Nigro, Chief Technology Officer of Commodore USA, states in public that his company obtained a license from Bill McEwen and is free "to do with [the Amiga brand] as we please" - Kleperis mentions the executor of an estate as his business partner. The estate in question would likely be that of former Amiga Inc. investor Pentti Kouri, who deceased in 2009.
Update: (24.02.2011, 22:30, cg)
In contrast to our initial assumption, Bill McEwen is apparently involved with this licensing deal. IContain's official press release has been posted by now, which quotes McEwen: "Amiga has continued to work on bringing new products with new partners, and we are pleased to be working with IContain providing new hardware and software solutions that will benefit everyone." (cg) (Translation: cg)
[News message: 24. Feb. 2011, 19:42] [Comments: 1 - 26. Feb. 2011, 20:23]
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