April 4, 2008 Intel Corporation has shown the second-generation design of its classmate PC - a low-cost, Internet-oriented, child-sized laptop computing platform designed to take the punishment dished-out in school environments and broaden access for the 95% of children worldwide who are currently deprived of the benefits offered by such technology. Dubbed a "Netbook", the classmate PC blueprint was unveiled this week at the Intel Developer Forum in Shanghai and is aimed at giving manufacturers the freedom to tailor laptop models for a variety of education needs. Based on an Intel® Celeron® M processor with 802.11b/g Wi-Fi and mesh network capabilities, top of the line models will feature a 9-inch LCD screen, extended battery life, 512 MB memory, a 30 GB HDD storage and an integrated webcam.
"Only 5 percent of the world's children today have access to a PC or to the Internet," said Andrew Chien, Intel vice president, Corporate Technology Group and director of Intel Research. "Education is one of the best examples of how technology improves our lives. We have seen how technology helps teachers create fun learning experiences more efficiently. We have also been touched by children's excitement when they are inspired by technology. The Intel-powered classmate PC is one of the ways we support the IT industry in spreading the benefits of technology in education for children around the world."
Featuring water resistant keyboards and a less susceptible to shock than its predecessor, the classmate PC supports Microsoft Windows XP and variants of the Linux operating environment and will come pre-installed with an education software stack available in more than eight languages. Intel also announced plans to use the energy-efficient, low-cost Intel® Atom™ processor for future classmate PCs.
Expected to cost between US$300 and $500 when it goes on sale in April this year, the new netbook line will be deployed as part of the "Intel World Ahead Program", a global initiative aimed at spreading digital accessibility and educational opportunities.