The desktop market is shrinking—and even the laptop market, in a way—with most users happy to slink away from bulky, powerful, all-in-one machines and opting instead for the convenience of smartphones and even wearable technology. More importantly, as technology becomes more accessible—with companies all over the world vying for who can make the most comprehensive and affordable pieces—the market is becoming increasingly more competitive as well.
And with that in mind, Chinese chipmaker Allwinner will soon offer what looks to be a $79 laptop using the Remix OS software to bring affordable and accessible mobile computing to anyone. This device actually runs Remix OS 2.0, which is a PC version of Android 5.1
If you aren’t familiar, the Remix OS is a channel of the Android OS for PCs and tablets and it has become quite popular among companies looking to give new life to old computers.
The new Allwinner PCs, though, will be available with an 11.6-inch 1266 x 768 display, running a 64-bit ARM Cortex-A53 processor with 1GB of RAM and 8GB of flash storage. Of course, as with most technology, storage can be upgradable; and apparently, so the can the screen size, which will also be available in a 14.1-inch size for about $20 more (though it will have the same screen resolution).
Apparently, though, the $79 price tag may be only for bulk orders with the lowest specifications. Allwinner says that the final price will ultimately depend upon how many people are interested in the product. The Chinese chip company says that if it can mass produce the device then it will probably hit the market at the $79 retail price point. Maybe they are aiming to equip the device in schools or businesses, over individual users? Still, if they can increase early interest, the price point will remain extremely low.
Considering that the storage capacity is lower than that of the average Android phone, the device may not appeal to everyone. However, with the upgrade capabilities—and at a price point similar to that of a decent Android phone—the small, simple computer is quite an accomplished offering.