Update: The $100 Laptop

The first functional prototype of the $100 laptop was recently unveiled at the Seven Countries Task Force meeting last week. These computers will be made available to children in third world and developing countries through the One Laptop Per Child initiative.

The $100 laptop is no longer expected to cost $100 when it is expected to be made available during mid-2007. Rather, the price will initially be about $135. The $100 price point won’t be possible until late 2008, and won’t be a reality until at least 5 million units have been manufactured. The price may drop below $100 eventually, when even more units are produced.

The increase in price is significant – over 40% – however, governments still seem to be interested. A meeting was recently held and attended by representatives from Argentina, Brazil, China, Egypt, Nigeria, India and several other countries, who all expressed interest in the program.

The laptops will be available in shades of green, yellow & orange, and blue (see photo). It is important to note that the screen displays on the prototypes are 25% smaller than those that will be mass produced. Each of the laptops in the photo is slightly different – some include speakers and four-way controllers around the screen, while some do not. The laptops will run on Linux technology, which significantly reduces costs and may in turn help catapult Linux into more mainstream acceptance.

For more photos of the laptops, check out the photoset on Flickr.

4 Comments

  1. DarrenDarren06-04-2006

    I think this is quite an old story (not sure though) – it was in the UK press sometime back, about Microsoft and other computer companies coming together to launch the first £99 computer which can be used in neglected areas in Africa. Children would be able to be educated online via the computer and also learn about Aids and other issues which affect them.

  2. JulieJulie06-04-2006

    Gates likes to make fun of the OLPC initiative, instead touting his $600 mobile computers, and saying how they should share them instead of wasting their time on something “silly”.  Microsoft still wants to sell the expensive PC’s, but focuses more on training people on how to use the computers. See this article.

  3. ChrisChris06-04-2006

    Darren, I remember seeing an article a time back as well, but I guess it was just speculation at the time and not actual ‘setting prices’.

    I know this is being done with the best intentions, but damn’t can’t we do something better with $100-$150 for these kids. I mean, is a computer really what they need right now.

  4. DarrenDarren06-05-2006

    Chris, I completely agree with you – I mean is a computer an essential item that these kids want – surely food, shelter, clothing and normal education. Kids nowadays are screwed to the TV, or computers without getting exercise, and that’s why in 15 years or so we are going to have a generation of overweight adults who can’t do anything.

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