One Laptop per Child gets first order
Uruguay has bought a 100 000 of the One Laptop per Child (OLPC) laptops, the first order received by the organisation.
The project, which aims to provide durable laptops at low cost to all children in the developing world, has been having trouble with a slow uptake. Despite the project’s high profile and the interest it has generated, until now no country has made a firm commitment to taking any of the machines.
OLPC chairman Nicholas Negroponte revealed to the New York Times in September that orders were slow, adding that he had “to some degree underestimated the difference between shaking the hand of a head of state and having a cheque written … it has been a disappointment.”
According to the BBC, the order was placed by the state-run Laboratorio TecnolÃ³gico del Uruguay (Latu), which runs an education and communications project known as Ceibal. In addition to the provision of the laptops, the scheme will provide connectivity to all of the schools involved.
Before placing the order, Latu had also evaluated the rival Intel Classmate PC.
BBC reports that the country might buy a further 300 000 of the machines to provide a machine for every child in the country by 2009.
As reported previously, the organisation will next month launch a “Get 1, Give 1” scheme to boost uptake.