One Laptop Per Child is showing their latest product, the OLPC XO-3 tablet at CES Unveiled, and we have a hands-on video.
It has an 8-inch, 4:3 aspect ratio display, which is actually looks like larger or wider screen size than most 7-inch, 16:ratio displays. OLPC took great pains to get the largest display while keeping the tablet a manageable size for young users.
The OLPC XO-3 features several ports: USB OTG for connecting peripherals and charging the device, headphone, mic, and a full-sized USB port to transfer files via “sneaker net”. It also has both a front and rear-facing camera.
The XO-3 runs Linux, and typically has the Sugar interface running on top of Linux. However customers can choose to run other distributions of Linux and even Android.
Since internet connectivity isn’t always available, OLPC preloads the XO-3 with a lot of educational content like Wikipedia “slices”, subsets of Wikipedia for offline consumption. OLPC also makes it easy for 3rd-party developers to create their own offline, pre-loaded educational content.
There are several interesting accessories for the XO-3 tablet. A simple silicone cover protects the screen when the tablet is stored, and can be placed on the back of the tablet for storage when the tablet is in use.
There was also a prototype case that they plan to equip with a 4-watt solar panel and a thin battery pack. The battery pack can be recharged via the solar panel, and provide power when the tablet is placed in the cover via the 4 screws on the outer edge of the XO-3. Not only are the screws holding the tablet’s case together, but they are also electrical contacts that the external battery cover can take advantage of.
Of course, the XO-3 also has a hand-crank charger accessory, which gives a tenfold return on the amount of hand cranking, i.e. you crank the charger for 6 minutes, and it offers 60 minutes of battery life. Tablet has mini-USB OTG port than can double as charging port. It also accompanied with full-size USB 2.0 host port, two additional ports for different sorts of chargers, like a cranking mechanism of a meat grinder style and a solar panel. Keyboard, chargers are optional. Screen looks like it’s ordinary TFT of 1024×600 resolution, but default font size is wisely adjusted for the tablet main purpose: children’s education.
Governments and other customers can choose several different options when they decide to place orders for the XO-3. They can choose battery capacity, display type (a Pixel Qi display option is available), variety of pre-loaded software, and so on. Depending on the options chosen, and the quantity of units purchased, pricing of the OLPC XO-3 will vary. Availability is also dependent on customer orders.
Check out our hands-on video below from CES Unveiled: