OLPC rules out Windows for XO-3

Windows Phone 7 won't do either, the CTO said

One Laptop Per Child won't use Microsoft's Windows OS on its upcoming XO-3 tablet, which will run Linux, OLPC's CTO said Thursday.

OLPC's chairman Nicholas Negroponte last year said that the organization was "urging" Microsoft to make a full version of Windows available for the earlier XO-2, which was also based on the Arm processor. The XO-2 was later canceled.

The XO-3 will also use an Arm processor, but OLPC is ruling out loading multiple versions of Windows on the tablet, said Ed McNierney, OLPC's CTO, by e-mail Thursday.

"We have no evidence that Microsoft will make full-featured Windows 7 available on Arm, and that's their decision," McNierney said.

Arm processors can run the Windows Mobile OS, but Windows Phone 7, Microsoft's upcoming mobile OS, was also rejected by McNierney.

"Our XO tablet will be a full-function computing device, not a smartphone or a PDA. Windows Mobile was designed for those markets, not general-purpose computing, and it's just not useful to us," McNierney said.

Existing XO laptops, whose primary audience is children in developing countries, come with x86 chips and offer Linux and Windows operating systems. But OLPC and its partners like Sugar Labs have made progress in developing power-management features in Linux and that is the OS of choice for XO-3, McNierney said.

"Our ability to achieve our low power goals depends on being able to make appropriate changes throughout the operating system, and that's just not possible except in an open source environment," McNierney said.

An XO-3 prototype will first be displayed at the Consumer Electronics Show early next year running Google's Android OS, Negroponte said in an e-mail. By January 2012, XO-3 will likely run a different Linux OS.

Current XO laptops run Linux with the Sugar platform, which provides an education-specific user interface. Sugar development is being managed by Sugar Labs, a nonprofit organization. McNierney said the company plans to stick to Sugar, but developers will need to adapt it for multitouch input capabilities to conform with XO-3's tablet design. Developers may also need to come up with alternative desktop interface ideas, McNierney said.

Join the PC World newsletter!

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

Tags notebooksOLPC XO-3oplcMicrosoftone laptop per child

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

Agam Shah

IDG News Service
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?