Print 16 comment(s) - last by murphyslabrat.. on Nov 7 at 4:47 PM

Intel's Classmate and the OLPC XO notebook fight it out in the market place despite partnership

When the One Laptop per Child Foundation first proposed the $100 laptop aimed at developing nations, it wasn’t long before Intel came along with its own super low cost laptop aimed at the same demographic called the Classmate PC.

For a while, the OLPC XO laptop and the Classmate from Intel were bitter rivals. That rivalry ended when the OLPC allowed Intel to sit on its board of directors and Intel invested cash into the project. What seems strange is that while Intel and the OLPC Foundation are now partners to some extent, the XO and Classmate laptops still fight it out in the marketplace.

BBC News reported recently that Uruguay purchased 100,000 XO Laptops and optioned an additional 300,000 XO laptops.  Many wondered if the production delays for the XO laptop would make it possible for the OLPC Foundation to fill the 100,000 XO order for Uruguay.

Yesterday, Reuters reported that Libya had purchased 150,000 of Intel’s Classmate notebooks powered by Microsoft Windows. Just a few weeks ago Libya had agreed to buy one million XO Laptops for the OLPC Foundation meaning in the closing hours of the XO deal Intel managed to steal the show.

Intel declined to comment on the price of the Classmate notebooks purchased by Libya, but did say it had not subsidized the cost of the machines. The Classmate notebook was first said to be priced at $250.

Reuters also reported that Libya has agreed to purchase the Classmate notebook rather than the XO laptop.

It remains to be seen if the new ASUS Eee PC notebook can also compete in this worldwide market for ultra-low cost notebook computers. ASUS promised versions of the Eee PC at $199 retail, even though the first units to hit the market here in the U.S. are priced at a much higher $399.

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By DeepBlue1975 on 11/1/2007 4:30:48 PM , Rating: 3
Don't know where the EEE will compete, but it surely won't be the "ultra low cost market".

It is "Ultra low cost" only if you compare it with the average price of the rest of UMPC machines.

It's just a very cheap UMPC, but as a full fledged notebook (which it is not) it's hardly cheap at all. For someone who doesn't need the extra portability brought by its small size and little weight, are much better of buying a 14 - 15 notebook for almost the same price but far more features and power.

RE: Hmm
By bobdelt on 11/1/2007 4:47:28 PM , Rating: 2
as a consumer, yes... but thats not what these are designed for.

When a government purchases tens of thousands of these, a couple hundred dollars makes a difference.

RE: Hmm
By DeepBlue1975 on 11/1/2007 9:20:51 PM , Rating: 2
You're talking about the OLPC there, not the EEE :D

I think there are full fledged notebooks going out for 400 dollars out there.
Besides, OLPCs are the ones supposed to be only sold to governments, while the EEE PC is targeted towards the retail market first.

RE: Hmm
By WilsuN on 11/1/2007 5:56:13 PM , Rating: 2
I guess the portability of these UMPC's are a biggie for the third-world countries. I've also heard that the OLPC's are really shock and water resistent. One problem I have with the OLPC, though, it its childish look. I don't think many people would want to be seen carrying around that to school/work.

RE: Hmm
By DarthPierce on 11/1/2007 7:42:23 PM , Rating: 3
I agree, it looks like a kids toy, but that's part of the idea...

It is "One Laptop Per CHILD" after all...

You're not supposed to want one for work, and you should be ostracised for doing it, since that laptop is ostensibly for 'the children'

RE: Hmm
By Captain Orgazmo on 11/1/2007 8:06:05 PM , Rating: 2
Does a middle- or highschool student not count as a child these days? If I were in 9th grade, I wouldn't want to use something that looks like it came from Teletubby land.

RE: Hmm
By Bluestealth on 11/1/2007 8:12:40 PM , Rating: 2
They started calling them "young-adults" for some odd reason.

RE: Hmm
By murphyslabrat on 11/1/2007 9:24:02 PM , Rating: 1
Yeah, because the standard for "adulthood" was lowered to the point where the only difference between a child of 15 and an "adult" of 30 is money, sex, and age. Though, Nowadays that second item is changing rapidly. Really, the older group should be called "old children."

If you go back to the middle ages, these "young adults" really were adults. They would have just been or would be about to marry, they would be responsible, at least, for their upkeep, if not for a wife as well. By 18 they would often have at least one kid, be responsible for bearing arms for their patron noble/landowner and providing for their family. If they lived to see 50, they would often have upwards of 6-8 living children, with possibly as many as a dozen children dead along the way.

Now fast forward to modern times, where some children stay in school through age 26 or maybe longer, though the ideal is to be in school through age 22 or 23. Real responsibility for supporting yourself doesn't come till you graduate. Even then, if these children actually marry, it usually won't be until 26-30.

They'll maybe have one or two kids. Of course, they will encourage their own offspring be the biggest brats you ever did see, by providing them with everything that they whine for. Meanwhile, like Dr. Frankenstein, they will chafe under the burden of the "monster" that they've created.

This example is an extreme, as there are women (sometimes men) who have to raise a child on their own from as early as 18 (or, nowadays, maybe earlier). Or you have people who have been working since age 11 (Chores around the house, or in the family business), as a girl I know did (she also just got back from 6 years active duty as a Navy Medic working in a Marine unit).

RE: Hmm
By jtemplin on 11/2/2007 9:31:34 AM , Rating: 2
some children stay in school through age 26 or maybe longer

I will be about this age when I get my PhD in neuroscience. If I went to say UPitt, they offer the following financial aid for doctoral students:

The stipend is $24,000 for the 2007-08 academic year. In addition, tuition costs are remitted, an individual health insurance program is provided and paid by the center, and matriculating students receive a one-time educational allowance of $2,000.

Hmm seems that by BEING a student, I will be supporting myself. For many PhD students, you are getting PAID to learn and earn your degree.

Education is the gold standard in our society now. Sure for some students, being kept "under the wing" for an extended amount of time may delay development of independence in some ways. However, there are plenty of undergrads paying their own way, working at night etc. Your darn right its an example at the extreme. Your subjective distinction as to the beginning of adulthood is rediculous, and should acknowledge the role of education in our society.

It is far more mature in my opinion to be increasing your knowledge and in turn your ability to generate income in the long term, than to be working for short term benefits. Young people who demonstrate a willingness to sacrifice small short term benefits for larger long term goals (read: delayed gratification), have a much better prospect in their life for achievement and success.

Perhaps you should reconsider what it means to be an adult, by contemporary standards, instead of comparing to the middle ages. I haven't borne arms lately, nor any children, but I can tell you that every day that I put into studying abstract things that seemingly have no bearing on my day to day subsistence, will bring me a better and brighter future. In my book, that is responsibility, and a hallmark of adulthood.

RE: Hmm
By murphyslabrat on 11/7/2007 4:47:21 PM , Rating: 2
Your darn right its an example at the extreme. Your subjective distinction as to the beginning of adulthood is rediculous, and should acknowledge the role of education in our society.

No, I am talking about the kids who work 10-20 hours a week and take 6 or fewer credits. I know several people at my school are doing that. Then you have those who wait till they're 20, or later, to start school. Then you have those kids who want to be lawyers or doctors on the sole merit of pay scale, and leech off of their parents till they get their first job. You have those kids who flop between programs for 8 years, because they dislike every program that they try. And that is just Higher education.

However, there are plenty of undergrads paying their own way, working at night etc.

No argument there, as that is what my brother and I are doing, along with several friends. My point is not that everyone is a lazy idiot, just most people (because if I said "everyone," then that would include me ^^j)

I will be about this age when I get my PhD in neuroscience.

The grievance I have is not with people trying to get an advanced degree, but with kids choosing a career because it pays well, then barely scraping by in classes because they didn't crack the textbook.

Perhaps you should reconsider what it means to be an adult, by contemporary standards, instead of comparing to the middle ages.

My point was not that adulthood comes by joining the militia, but that the level and age of expected responsibility has changed dramatically. That the visible majority of kids remain kids well into their 20's

RE: Hmm
By Ringold on 11/1/2007 8:34:52 PM , Rating: 3
These arent for spoiled Western brats whose mommies can afford an XPS Gaming Notebook or, if the 16 year old stud really wants to get laid, a Macbook Pro.

These kids in the developed world are lucky if they have clean water, avoided intestinal worms or any other myriad conditions easily treated by about a buck's worth of medicine, or speaking of disease, it's no small feat to have survived past infancy at all.

In the case of Libya, apparently you're lucky if you've got a father smart enough to not dare voice an opinion.

Uruguay is in better shape, perhaps they're rich enough there to give a big hoot about style. Not to say they won't neglect the hell out of these things possibly as much as developed world kids would, I'm not that naive, humans are humans.. but just saying I don't reckon it'll be because it doesn't match their Levi Strauss jeans.

But no, I wouldn't tote around one of these things either. :P

An Eee PC, yes.

RE: Hmm
By murphyslabrat on 11/1/2007 9:30:45 PM , Rating: 2
Well, if these were marketed in the US, there would probably be more professional looking models. Imagine it with simpler lines, and a two-tone of some combination of gray, black, and white.

While not superior to the EEE PC in terms of performance, it would be powerful enough to browse the web and play PowerPoint presentations. Furthermore, the swiveling screen would make it ideal for one-on-one presentations, such as those done by B2B sales reps.

RE: Hmm
By Ringold on 11/1/2007 11:52:04 PM , Rating: 2
I disagree with none of that, but will point out they're intended for the developing world, not fashion-oriented America. That was a key assumption in my head while making that post, that it was for the "transitional economies" out there rather than our own. Isn't it a fairly recent development that they'll be available here at all?

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