esterday, a Hong Kong-based company called Cherrypal surprised the world by announcing that it is coming to market with a sub-$100 PC — a long-awaited development in the world of low-end computing. The machine, which is named "Africa," is an ultra-basic laptop with a 7-inch screen, a 400-MhZ processor, and a lithium battery good for four hours of use. According to Cherrypal, Africa is both "environmentally friendly" and a perfect way to give the poor access to the internet. Will the $99 laptop change the world?
At last, it's here: "We've been hearing about the '$100 laptop'...for years," says Jeff Bertolucci at PC World. Finally, it has "materialized." But American consumers should keep in mind that the machine will be "woefully underpowered for the types of Web tasks we take for granted." Nonetheless, it "may have a bright future in the world's less developed regions."
"The $99 laptop debuts"
Still not the best option for budget green buyers: The product is intriguing for many reasons, says Jaymi Heimbuch at TreeHugger. But for environmentally-aware consumers, the better choice would be to find a $100 used notebook "on Craigslist." Not only will you get a more powerful machine, it's also the "greener" choice.
"Wait...Cherrypal is back?!"
We know exactly what to expect: I'm not going to buy one of these laptops "and neither are you," says Harry McCracken at Technologizer. But kudos to Cherrypal for their "refreshingly honest" desciption of the product as "slow" and a "no-thrills" PC. But, as the company also says, it seems "sufficient" to meet the needs of many people in developing countries for whom "even $99 is going to be a stretch."
"Cherrypal's $99 laptop: Small! Slow! Sufficient!"
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why atheism doesn't have the upper hand over religion
- 31 TV shows to watch in 2014
- The world's dumbest idea: Taxing solar energy
- Why would a young person today be religious?
- He said he was leaving. She ignored him.
- Attack of the invasive species
- Why Good Friday is so important to Christians
- Which states get screwed worst by the Electoral College?
- Why I'm a pro-life liberal
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
Subscribe to the Week