Industry News Desk
Intel & OLPC Split-City
Intel quit the One Laptop Per Child board last week rather than get thrown off for badmouthing AMD
By: Maureen O'Gara
Jan. 12, 2008 12:30 PM
You have perhaps heard - given the amount of ink spilled on the story - that Intel quit the One Laptop Per Child board last week rather than get thrown off for badmouthing and competing against the altruistic non-profit and its cute little kid-friendly, customer-shy, AMD Geode-based green-and-white widget, the thing that was supposed to cost $100 and currently costs $188.
Intel only took the board seat and promised millions of dollars in financial aid last July after the head of OLPC, Nicholas Negroponte, complained about Intel's interference with his brainchild and its potential third-world buyers on television's "60 Minutes."
And Intel says it vacated the board seat because Negroponte kept demanding that Intel dump its $300 XO-alternative Windows-based Classmate machine and stop supporting makers of other XO-competitive boxes like the Asus Eee.
Intel, which had forbidden its salespeople to do side-by-side product comparisons of the XO and the Classmate to pacify OLPC, says it's not about to support a single solution - especially for such a large market - and that it has to honor the commitments it's made to governments and what are essentially local white box carriers.
In an angry statement last Friday OLPC, which blames Intel - at least in part - for its failure to get third-world governments to adopt the XO, claimed that "Intel did not deliver on any of the promises they made when they joined OLPC," "contributed nothing of value to OLPC," "never contributed in any way to our engineering efforts and failed to provide even a single line of code to the XO software efforts."
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