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Thursday, 12 March 2009 11:27

OLPC mulls dumping AMD Geode CPUs

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XO-2 to be ARM based


Nicholas Negroponte,
chairman of OLPC, says the non-profit organization is "almost committed" to using ARM chips in XO-2 laptops which are slated for release in 18 months.

The current XO-1 units ship with AMD Geode x86 CPUs, but OLPC is looking to improve battery life on the next generation, at the cost of x86 compatibility issues.

"Our current XO-1 uses an average of 5 watts of power, and while most people think that's amazingly low, we think it's our biggest problem," says Ed McNierney, chief technology officer at OLPC.

However, ARM chips can't run a full version of Windows, and are limited to Mobile editions of Redmond's OS. OLPC is looking into ways of offering a dual-boot option for its users, enabling them to choose between Linux or Windows.

"We are urging Microsoft to make Windows, not Windows Mobile, available on the Arm," says Negroponte. He claims OLPC is in talks with Microsoft to develop a full version Windows OS specially for the XO-2. Negroponte says a lot could change in regard to Microsoft and ARM support, as the launch is still 18 months away.

Microsoft did not comment the issue.

More here.

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