We’ve been hearing about the "$100 laptop," a no-frills, low-power portable computer that meets the educational needs of children in developing nations, for a few years now. But no product has materialized at that price point … until now, PC World reports. Cherrypal has launched a $99 portable, the Cherrypal Africa, a "mini-netbook" built to bring internet access to the world’s poor. The Cherrypal Africa’s specs won’t impress anyone–a fact the netbook’s builder doesn’t deny. "Make no mistake, the Cherrypal is not a fancy system. It’s small, just a 7-inch screen, no thrills, and admittedly not exactly fast, though good enough to browse the web," writes company founder Max Seybold on the GreenOpenFair blog. In addition to the 7-inch display, the Cherrypal Africa has a 400-MHz processor, 256 MB RAM, and 2 GB of flash memory. It runs either Linux or Windows CE. Seybold believes the $99 Africa might find a niche in developed nations, too. "There are still more than 15 million Americans who can’t afford [a] laptop, who have to go to a public library or live without access to the internet at all, which is becoming increasingly difficult," he writes. The nonprofit One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) initiative also offers a no-frills mini-note. Benefactors can purchase $199 OLPC portables, which the organization then ships to students in developing nations. When OLPC first launched, its goal was to develop a $100 laptop, but the group never was able to hit that target price…

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