India, Sierra Leone place OLPC orders

250,000 laptops are headed to India and 5,000 to Sierra Leone

India has ordered 250,000 laptops from the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) organization, while a human rights organization will supply 5,000 OLPC machines to Sierra Leone.

In India, two government organizations and one private-sector entity placed the laptop orders, Satish Jha, president and CEO of OLPC India, said Friday.

These are the first orders in India for the OLPC XO laptop, with distribution set to begin in June to about 1,500 schools.

Giving a computer to every single child under the OLPC program was reportedly described as "pedagogically suspect" in 2006 by the country's education secretary in a letter to the country's Planning Commission.

But the government as a whole did not have an issue with OLPC, and leading government education agencies support OLPC, Jha said.

Most of the 250,000 laptops will go to children in suburban and rural areas, Jha said.

In areas where Internet connectivity is not available or is too expensive, the laptops will be connected through mesh networks to a server from where information can be downloaded, Jha said.

OLPC has a target to deploy 3 million laptops in India this year, he added.

In Sierra Leone, the plan is to distribute 5,000 XO laptops by 2011, according to Mohammed Kaindaneh, secretary general of the Human Rights Respect Awareness Raising Campaigners (HURRARC).

Fundraising to pay for the project, which will cost about US$1 million, will take place over the next two years.

A pilot project involving 50 primary schools and 500 pupils will receive 100 OLPC computers, Kaindaneh said.

The laptops for the three-month pilot are not included in the larger order for 5,000 OLPC laptops.

Ethiopia, Rwanda, Nigeria and Ghana also have received OLPC laptops.

News of the laptop project in Sierra Leone comes as research teams in Kenya, Nigeria and Zimbabwe release findings that the Asus Eee PC netbook is a better choice for African nations than the XO laptop.

Asus is better suited to individual owners and users in rural Africa who need low-power PCs, researchers found.

They ranked the Asus Eee first for the needs of Africa, followed by Intel's Classmate, OLPC's XO, the Inveno Computing Station and Ncomputing's X300.

(Rebecca Wanjiku in Kenya contributed to this report.)

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags africaolpcindia

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?