One Laptop Per Child can't get a break today. First they admit that the XO-1 laptop cost is now $188-$205 dollars per computer, double the original "$100 laptop" marketing slogan, casting doubts on OLPC's pricing ability.
Then, Jim Finlke reports that OLPC has postponed Quanta Computer's XO assembly:
Production, which was slated to begin this month, has been postponed to November so that the group can work out bugs in the final beta version of the green-and-white laptops, said foundation spokesman George Snell.Now the cynic in me wants to say that the production delay is not related to an unfinished Sugar user interface, as the OLPC developers are a very gifted lot. I would rather make the case that both the increase in price and delay in production are related to the lack of government buyers.
Some 40,000 units will be produced in November, then about 80,000 the following month, he said.
I say that Quanta and its computer component suppliers increased the OLPC costs as the sales projections dropped from the original 10 million Children's Machines per year, to 5, then 3, and now 1 million units or less.
And now that production goals have dropped so low, Quanta is probably shifting it production capacity to support computer retailers that do meet their sales forecasts and are ready to sell laptops by Christmas.