Teaming up with chip maker Marvell, the One Laptop Per Child non-profit organization will be at CES displaying the XO 3.0 tablet designed for children in South American and African countries. Coming in at a scant $100 price tag for the base model, the tablet utilizes Marvell’s 1Ghz PXA618 processor in addition to 512MB of RAM and runs on both Google Android Honeycomb as well as OLPC’s custom Linux operating system. Shipping with an internal battery that offers an eight to ten hour battery life, the tablet is designed to be charged through solar panels or by using a hand crank. The hand crank offers about 10 minutes of runtime after 60 seconds of cranking the device. This allows children that don’t have access to electricity to still use the tablet for learning while in school.
The tablet is offered with two different screen options, a standard LCD screen or a PixelQi display that allows children to see the screen in sunlight similar to an Amazon Kindle. While the PixelQi display reduces the power usage of the tablet and extends the battery life, the price tag for each tablet is pushed above the $100 mark. The screen is 8 inches in size and offers a 1024 by 768 resolution. While thicker than most tablets on the market, the case for the device is designed to be rugged and the screen of the tablet can be covered with a flexible material. The tablets won’t be sold directly to consumers or businesses but rather in bulk to representatives of countries.
The OLPC organization also plans on replacing the x86-based processors in the OLPC laptops with the low power Marvell chipsets this year. The next shipment of OLPC laptops to Nicaragua and Uruguay schools will use the Marvell chipset and ship out to those countries during March 2012 for about $185 per laptop.