If you hadn’t noticed by now, solar is a big theme at the Consumer Electronics Show. Another one which jumped out in the early announcements to us is an inexpensive laptop developed by a non-profit whose goal is to give children all around the world access to a computer for learning and development. The entity is One Laptop per Child (OLPC) and the product is the XO 3.0.
OLPC has been in the game a bit these last few years hoping to create a laptop that could be priced at $100 per unit for bulk purchase in developing nations like Uruguay and Nicaragua. The XO 3.0, developed in conjunction with Marvell, is described as a low-power, rugged tablet style computer that will reportedly be available by end of year. It builds upon previous models OLPC has developed along the way as it worked to figure out a model that so far has seen low cost laptops distributed to more than 2.4 million children in 42 countries and in 25 languages.
Where solar comes into play, as you can see in the photo below, is as one of several possible soft cover designs for the tablet. In this particular case, the solar panel not only shelters the tablet, but also makes use of the computer’s unique charging circuitry to charge the unit in an efficient manner. Other charging options for the XO 3.0 include hand cranking and what is described as other alternative power sources.
Features of the XO 3.0 tablet will include use of a Marvell ARMADA PXA618 SOC processor, Avastar Wi-Fi SOC, standard or Pixel Qi sunlight readable display and Android/Linux operating system support. Some of these options might drive the cost of the XO 3.0 up a bit, which is something OLPC might have some challenges on in trying to get the more pricey units sold in places where every dollar counts towards rough day to day living situations.