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The Municator - A Chinese Answer to the $100 Laptop
Alex Steffen, 27 Apr 06

A new competitor to the hundred dollar laptop? A Chinese company has plans to ship a $150 Linux machine, the "Municator," within the next three months:

Urging potential customers to "Say no to Wintel," YellowSheepRiver is devoted to using its own Linux distribution and hardware designed and manufactured by Chinese companies. YellowSheepRiver hopes to close the "digital divide" by making computer technology available to the Chinese public at an affordable price.

How do you say leapfrog in Mandarin, again? Of course, given the ever-increasing river of e-waste we're generating, it might be nice if the new generation of cheap machines were green computers as well.

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Unfortunately, I suspect that the shape memory alloys used to allow instant disassembly and reuse don't come that cheap, yet.

(I may be wrong, of course: can anyone verify?)

Posted by: Tony Fisk on 27 Apr 06

A Chinese company has developed the first computer costing around 1,000 yuan (125 U.S. dollars) using a Chinese-made Godson II CPU, and plans to put the computers into industrial production in June.

The performance of Longmeng, or Dragon Dream, is equivalent to a 1G Pentium III desktop, according to Zhang. It is a computer, a DVD player and also a video game player.

The computer, equipped with standard PC accessories, is portable as it is the size of a textbook and weighs 500 grams.

Longmeng is the size of a notebook, 17 × 14 cm, 500 grams, and early newsreporting erroneously presented it to be a laptop.

The new computer has been announced by the computer expert Zhang Fuxin. According to Fuxin, the purpose of this project is to provide everyone with a personal computer.

The computer is marketed by the Menglan Group from the eastern city of Changshu in the province of Jiangsu, which has plans of selling 100,000 low-cost computers in 2006. The Longmeng is intended for low income groups as well as rural area students.

Posted by: andreas buechel on 3 May 06



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