OLPC, Microsoft and Linux

Larry Dignan writes:

According to an AP report, Nicholas Negroponte said the $100 laptop for kids in developing countries actually runs about $175. He also added that it will be able to run Windows and could be used in the U.S. too.

A few big points to ponder in this one:

1. Microsoft’s $3 software package looks more brilliant by the minute in terms of heading off Linux encroachment. The One Laptop Per Child project represented Linux’s big chance. Teach the fastest growing areas to grow up with Linux and Microsoft would be hurting in a generation or two. By offering a $3 package of software, Microsoft makes itself competitive with desktop Linux. As Dana Blankenhorn notes: Microsoft gets a strategic win on the desktop. It’s too early to count out open source though.

3. The OLPC would wreak havoc in the U.S. According to the AP report, 19 governors have expressed interest in the OLPC. That should spark fear at Apple and other PC players in the education market.

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.