Software Titan Microsoft (opens in new tab) has confirmed plans for an OLPC XO Windows XP version and simultaneously dismissed the idea of a dual-booting XO Laptop which would have used both XO's own linux based operating system and Windows XP's OS.
A news article by Silicon also confirmed that Microsoft is looking to start trials of the new Windows XP OS as from this month.
The buzz surrounding the ultra cheap sub laptop, which until recently was a contradiction in itself, has been growing ever since the Asus EEE laptop was released back in November 2007.
There are at least six major manufacturers that have announced plans to make mini laptops costing GBP 150 or less in 2008 or not and Microsoft cannot afford to allow Linux to get this market for its own without a fight.
Earlier this month, Intel had pulled out of the XO OLPC project citing "Philosophical differences" while Mary Lou Jepsen, OLPC's founding Chief Technology Office, left the company to launch a for-profit company whose first project is a USD 75 laptop.
Bruce Perens, one of the Open Source Movement most respected advocates, argues that this comes as no surprise that Microsoft, just like Intel, is trying to join the OLPC project (opens in new tab) in order to reduce choice by refusing to tolerate hardware that runs on another operating system by default.