One Laptop Per Child is set to announce that it will sell “XO” laptops, custom-built for the developing world, in North America. However, buyers have to purchase two computers — one for themselves and one for a child in the developing world, for a combined cost of $399.
The One Laptop per Child Program seeks to distribute affordable laptops to millions of schoolchildren in the developing world. The original aim was to sell them in bulk to governments and foundations for $100 each to give to schoolchildren, but the price goal has proved tough as costs have risen. It isn't clear how strong demand for the product will be present in the U.S., where leading laptop manufacturers continue to lower prices on more fully featured devices. The requirement to purchase two might be a barrier to some buyers.