Intel have launched their latest Classmate PC design, the CTL 2go Convertible Classmate PC NL2, and to be honest we're wondering why kids get to play with this and we don't. Based on Intel's Atom N450 1.66GHz processor, paired with 1GB of RAM and a choice of up to 32GB of flash or a 2.5-inch HDD, the NL2 gets a 10.1-inch 1024 x 600 resistive touchscreen, water-resistant keyboard and touchpad, and optional WiMAX, 3G or GPS.
The CTL 2go Convertible Classmate PC (aka Intel Convertible Classmate PC) had its official launch at CES 2009, and many had high-hopes for the touchscreen netbook. Much of that was down to its already infamous touch-usability, and that's certainly won praise in Laptop Mag's review. Sitting on top of Windows XP is a quick-launcher CTL call "Blue Dolphin", offering finger-friendly instant access to apps and settings. As previews suggested, it's one of the most successful launcher implementations on a netbook-style device, and should, according to reviewer Joanna Stern, find favor with adults and children alike.
Intel's Classmate Tablet PC was a surprise announcement at IDF yesterday, and Laptop Mag have scored a little more time with the education-focused notebook. While the hardware is certainly pre-production - both the handle and the touchpad you see here are temporary, with Intel still working out exactly how they will look - overall it looks too promising even to be simply left for the classroom.
Intel briefly stoked some curiosity in the unnamed Tablet PC concept they showed at the end of the first IDF keynote, but most people assumed it was merely another sort of medical assistant device. That assumption seems to be true, as Intel's ultraportable surprise was somewhat spoilt by having a working prototype - confirming Panasonic as the manufacturer - elsewhere at IDF.
Are Intel dusting off their Mobile Clinical Assistant concept and attempting to give it 10cc's of today's ultramobile gloss? That's certainly what it looks like going by today's IDF keynote; Dadi Perlmutter, executive vice president and general manager of the Intel Mobility Group, closed the show by throwing up this slide and promising details on Wednesday.
The surprise pull-out of Intel from the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project might have been down to an Intel saleswoman's aggressive marketing tactics with an Peruvian education minister, attempting to dissuade the official from ordering thousands of OLPC XO1 units in favour of the chip-manufacturer's own Classmate PC.
The main challenge for the OLPC team was meant to be finding enough orders for their developing-nation laptops, but ructions between them and their hardware partners may be an even bigger struggle. Intel, who have both sat on the OLPC board and were possibly set to provide the processor for the PC, have resigned their position and withdrawn all technical and financial support after OLPC asked them to cease promoting rival low-cost laptops.
"OLPC had asked Intel to end our support for non-OLPC platforms, including the Classmate PC, and to focus on the OLPC platform exclusively. At the end of the day, we decided we couldn't accommodate that request" Chuck Molly, Intel Spokesman
With a 7” screen, its own version of Linux, 1GB of flash storage, a 900MHz processor and 256MB of RAM it has landed in Vietnam for the low, low price of $250, if you are a student. The screen has an 800x480 resolution and the system has a 400MHz bus, I also left out the 802.11b/g WiFi that is stuffed in there somewhere.