Print 14 comment(s) - last by ceefka.. on May 6 at 6:52 AM

Intel aims to provide developing nations with cheap PCs and WiMax Internet

Intel is in a generous mood these days and is trying to promote technology in all parts of the world. As a part of its "The World Ahead" program, the company will spend about $1B USD to provide cheap PCs and a WiMax broadband Internet infrastructure in developing nations. With Intel seeing slower growth in saturated PC markets in the United States and Europe, the company is looking for other avenues to purse in order to expand its growth potential.

Intel is tailoring the PCs for different markets instead of taking a "one size fits all" approach according to Intel chief executive Paul Otellini. The change in company policy is practiced in part by several other companies; Samsung Electronics being one of the most noteable examples.  In India for example, laptops will be equipped with cool-running processors to deal with high-heat conditions and feature a flash-based hard drive to improve durability. The Intel sponsored sub-$400 PCs can also run off a car battery if need be. Reuters reports:

Intel would equip computers with both WiFi and WiMax capability and would promote WiMax development as an inexpensive way to provide widespread Internet service. WiMax is sort of a beefed up WiFi technology that offers high-speed Internet over a long range. "Less than 5 percent of the world has access to broadband," Otellini said. "WiMax is the means of delivering low-cost broadband to the world."

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Intel aims to provide developing nations
By crystal clear on 5/5/2006 6:41:38 AM , Rating: 2
Yes certainly a great idea & a good cause but can do better & cheaper.I have long being promoting the idea of a sort of trade in program,whereby we the upgraders/buyers of newer computers can buy newer CPUs(the trio) in return for trading in our old Intel CPUs at a discount.
Maybe Intel has a huge pile up of inventories(who knows) & looking to get rid of them.Solution - dump them in 3rd world countries.
We are entering a new generation of CPUs & the older ones have no place in our markets.
The buying capacities of these 3rd world countries is very low indeed & questionable.So that has to be taken into account plus attitudes /mindset of people there.
Success for the programme will be slow in coming,but certainly makes good PR for Intel.

By peternelson on 5/5/2006 8:03:49 AM , Rating: 2

I think some countries could do with some DRINKABLE WATER, and reliable electrical power available cheaply, BEFORE receiving PCs and Wimax.

We hardly have Wimax yet in the "North" countries.

I don't doubt the altruism (albeit with self-interest in selling PCs into those markets) and that Internet access may help disseminate information and aid learning in these countries, but it is a two-edged coin. We may see a large increase in the so-called "Nigerian" fraud scam emails if more people have access to the Internet. Perhaps such internet connectivity needs some kind of filtering gateway to detect and supress such traffic. Let's hope people of these countries don't get burdened with a load of international debt from buying PCs to rival the debts they already have for useful things like roads, dams, dictator palaces etc.

By Burning Bridges on 5/5/2006 8:13:48 AM , Rating: 2
I think some countries could do with some DRINKABLE WATER, and reliable electrical power available cheaply, BEFORE receiving PCs and Wimax.

I totally agree with this

RE: Intel aims to provide developing nations
By shadowzz on 5/5/2006 8:54:35 AM , Rating: 4
Maybe you should bring that up with Pepsi instead of Intel.

By ajdavis on 5/5/2006 10:53:06 AM , Rating: 2
I think the point here is that there is a priority in these countries. Right now people don't need computers. I can understand the want to spread your market but I don't believe this is the way to do it.

By OrSin on 5/5/2006 11:15:49 AM , Rating: 2
The truth is our "old" CPU are not worth much to developing country. It just not made for sub $200 PC that will work in hot low energy locations. And in all reality they don't need the processing power. Most countries would get by fine with 500Mhz CPU. The power of most pcket pc is more then they need. The

By DallasTexas on 5/5/2006 12:44:10 PM , Rating: 3
"..I think some countries could do with some DRINKABLE WATER, and reliable electrical power available cheaply, BEFORE receiving PCs and Wimax..."

Good observation but Intel is not in the business of providing food and water. They are in the business of providing technology and hence that is where they are placing their investment.
You might also consider that in the poorest countries, their might actually be more than a few that already have food and water. If you see that, you might also see an opportunity to start with those 'lucky folks' to enhance the economy of that country.
Seems like a worth while investment by a technology company like Intel.

By rushfan2006 on 5/5/2006 11:41:05 AM , Rating: 2
I think some countries could do with some DRINKABLE WATER, and reliable electrical power available cheaply, BEFORE receiving PCs and Wimax.

I'm like the third person to say this, but I agree with you. Things like FOOD and WATER are just a tad more important than WiMax or $400 PCs/Laptops...

Think that is pathetic a certain portion of our population will look at this and go "awww see Intel is such a nice and generous company"......yeah they are putting $1 billion to expand their market share in the world....yeah really this has NOTHING to do with Intel making a business investment hoping for a return even if its not realized for a decade or so.

By tk109 on 5/5/2006 4:26:44 PM , Rating: 2
Well they can use their new computers and wi-fi to access ebay and buy all the fresh water and food they want :)

I think this is a great idea. If anything it will give more of the people in these countries more oppurtunities. They can also now see how the rest of the world is. And also educate themselves more. And knowledge can only help. But I also think that to many people hear "3rd world country" or "developing nation" and automaticly assume that everyone there is living in a shack with no water and urine running down the middle of the street. Thats not the case for the entire country.

By Alphafox78 on 5/5/2006 1:01:59 PM , Rating: 2
I recall this debate a while ago..

These laptop are not for countries that dont have drinking water, they are for thoes that do allready. Its cheeper for electronic books and stuff than for paper ones. Intel is helping in the market it supports, making CPUs and sutch. There will always be poor countries that need drinking water, but there are other poor countries that could use some low cost computers for teaching and other things. That is the market Intel is going after. they wont be handing a man dying of thurs a laptop, the will be handing some who has water and needs to read a laptop.

RE: Sigh..
By peternelson on 5/5/2006 3:29:41 PM , Rating: 2
In my country, books are still cheaper than laptops. Perhaps they could organise the establishment of "libraries" if the books are THAT expensive.

RE: Sigh..
By Eris23007 on 5/5/2006 5:34:40 PM , Rating: 3

One or two books may be cheaper than a laptop... but thousands of books? Millions of books? The kinds of information resources on top through the combination of a moderately powerful computer and a broadband connection?

Don't be daft, man.

RE: Sigh..
By Eris23007 on 5/5/2006 5:35:13 PM , Rating: 2
on tap that is.

...stupid lack of edit function... :-P

RE: Sigh..
By ceefka on 5/6/2006 6:52:55 AM , Rating: 1
That would be the case if you can rely on everything on the internet being true. Not that everything in books is true, but there you go.

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