Psystar Thumbs Apple, Rolls Out New Mac Clone

PC clone maker Psystar may be in legal hot water with Apple, but that hasn't stopped the company from releasing yet another unauthorized Mac clone. The company's new Open(3) mini tower PC ships with Mac OS X pre-installed, which is exactly what lead to its ongoing court battle with Apple over licensing and copyright issues.

Psystar found itself squarely in Apple's legal line of fire after it began selling computers with Mac OS X pre-installed, but without first obtaining permission from the Cupertino-based company to offer PCs with the operating system. Apple's licensing does not allow for installing Mac OS X on non-Apple hardware.

Apple claimed that Psystar is infringing on its Mac OS X copyright, and Psystar countered that Apple was violating anti-trust laws. The court tossed out Psystar's anti-trust claims, so the company is now pursuing a copyright abuse claim.

The two companies aren't scheduled to appear in court until November, so Psystar still has a few months to try to sell more of its Mac clones, and Apple's legal team has more time to include the company's newest computer in its case.

Psystar is hoping the court will rule in its favor, but the odds may be against the company. "Psystar is unlikely to win the right to install OS X on its Open Computers, but this lawsuit is going to take a long time," one attorney said.

A long legal battle with Apple will likely cause more harm that good for Psystar, and could drive the company out of business. If so, Psystar's new Open(3) Mac clone could be a collector's item by next year.

[Thanks to Pocket-lint for the heads up.]