News did the rounds earlier in the week about India’s supposed $10 dollar laptop. The laptop reportedly costs $20 to manufacture, but according to India’s Secretary for Higher Education, large-scale production runs would see the price in half by the time it hits consumers.
The news no doubt had Nicholas Negroponte and the lads over at the OLPC foundation quaking in their boots. The XO Laptop was already getting its ass kicked by the barrage of netbooks that hit the market shortly after its launch and Intel’s rival educational notebook, the Classmate PC was winning over governments and filling more classrooms than the OLPC’s laptop.
Fortunately for the OLPC and unfortunately for everyone else, it seems like there’s less to the $10/$20 laptop than we originally thought--considerably less. With "megabytes" of onboard memory and wi-fi capabilities we (rather optimistically, we’ll admit) pictured something that resembled the netbooks we’re seeing now but a little more primitive. What we saw, was not a laptop, nor was it $10, or even $20. And why it was being touted as a laptop still remains a mystery
Times of India reports that the Sakshat is a 10-inch by 5-inch plastic box which, despite an official unveiling at India's Sri Venkateswara University yesterday, still contains only mystery parts. It appeared more like a storage device than anything else. As for the $10 price, the expected price is closer to thirty bucks. Bummer. It feels like being promised a car and getting a single rollerskate.