Quanta Computer to manufacture MITâ€™s USD 100 Laptop
Taiwan-based Quanta Computer has chosen to be the ODM for the USD 100 laptop under the program sponsored by the non-profit organization One Laptop per Child. Quanta have promised that they would be devoting significant engineering resources from the Quanta Research Institute (QRI) the first half of 2006 and plan to bring the product to the market by the end of next year.
The launch would seen between 5-15 million units being distributed in seven culturally diverse countries such as China, India, Brazil, Argentina, Egypt, Nigeria, and Thailand. The initial release would be for 1 million units for each of these countries. Their would be another additional modest allocation of machines to seed developer communities in a number of other selected countries.
Their would also be a commercial version of this machine developed side by side which would be sold in the retail market at a slightly premium price. The program was started to aid the development in IT field in the developing countries by helping providing low cost computers to kids in schools. The organization has been created by Nicholas Negroponte and other faculty members from the MIT Media Lab.
The machine is developed to be rugged and inexpensive and can be turned on through hand cranking alone. The project is supported by the leading IT companies of the world including Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), Brightstar, Google, News Corp., Nortel, and Red Hat. Intel recently criticized this program calling these cheap computers as gadgets rather than fully functional computers.