North Korea has a state-controlled economy, and it produces devices such as tablets and computers for its citizens who can afford them. This isn't really news. But Myohyang IT, a state-owned North Korean tech company, just announced a new tablet that will raise some eyebrows: It's called . . . the iPad.
That's right. While North Korea hasn't exactly been respectful of intellectual property and trademarks in the past, this blatant violation sets a new bar for the military dictatorship. It's pretty safe to say that Apple is likely not happy about this development.
Myohyang IT Company calls its tablet the Ryonghung iPad. It has, "1GHz CPU, 512MB Ram, 8GB internal memory, 16GB external Memory, an eight-inch screen and weighs 250g [about half a pound]," according to NK News. A six-hour battery rounds out these less-than-stellar specs.
This isn't the first time that North Korea has made copycat Apple devices: Pyongyang trade fairs have hosted iMac clones. The North Korean government also released a Linux-based proprietary operating system a few years ago called Red Star that looks suspiciously like OS X.
Apple hasn't responded to this latest flagrant breach of its iPad trademark, though it's not exactly likely that these devices will be in high demand outside of North Korea. It will be interesting to see how far Apple will go to protect its intellectual property. We've reached out to Apple for a comment and haven't yet heard back.