$100 Laptops Coming in Q1 ’07

100 LaptopIDG news reports that the first $100 laptops will ship in the first quarter next year. The initiative was originally (and predominantly still) for third world countries and educational uses but, mark my words, this will fast become a mainstream consumer product — you can bet your life on it.

It could become something like the iPod of computers, branded, colorful, customizable. Even if the MIT-developed version doesn’t become a widely used consumer product, someone will start producing one, which will force the industry as a whole to roll out a range of ultra low-cost laptops.

I wrote about what this low-cost computer potentially means a bunch of times and won’t rehash that here. But it will have a big impact on the market and may be the thing that — if pervasively adopted — drives a shift from the desktop to web-based computing, storage, etc. This is where Google’s acquisition of Jotspot (+ docs & spreadsheets, etc.) and companies like Zoho would really benefit.

The thing about these machines is that they don’t have lots of hard drive space so they will have to leverage the Internet as a computing platform.

One Response to “$100 Laptops Coming in Q1 ’07”

  1. howardowens.com: media blog » Blog Archive » The coming $100 laptops Says:

    […] What if a newspaper bought a boatload of $100 computers and gave them away, maybe in the poorest neighborhoods. The outside would be branded and the default, unchangeable home page would be the paper’s Web site … what would that mean for the paper, the community, the culture? And would the ROI be worth it? […]

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