Sunday, May 13, 2007

why the OLPC may sell in the USA

Does Intel Fear $100 laptops? (download this pdf to read this Fortune article in full)

OLPC may sell in the USA to achieve the economies of scale needed to bring the price down to $100 by 2008. The current price of the OLPC is $176.

This arises from competition from Intel which is now selling its Classmate PC for $180 in the same countries where governments have expressed interest in the OLPC

This threatens to undermines the economies of scale required to bring down the price of the OLPC to $100.

"We need to trigger a supply chain for three million units to get started," Negroponte says, "and need a few large agreements to kick it off. I just cannot do 300 deals of 10,000 each."

By selling the OLPC in the USA where interest is very high the OLPC project will be able to kick off these economies of scale. This will also attract more programmers to the project

It's a strategy game between Negroponte who wants to help the poor and Intel who wants to make money and wreck the OLPC project in the process

It seems to me, therefore, unlikely that the OLPC will be offered for sale in Australia shortly because of our low population. However, I believe that special submission could be made to sell the laptop to aboriginal communities, who have long lived in third world conditions.

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