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Microsoft Slashes Windows XP Price To Compete With Linux

Windows XP Home edition will probably prove to be a major hit with low cost laptops and computer manufacturers after Microsoft announced that it will be cutting the cost of the operating system to a mere £13 in developing markets and £16 elsewhere.

The manufacturers get a further £5 rebate if they are eligible for Microsoft's Market Development Agreement, which means that they are almost giving away the OS; a strategic move by Microsoft to counteract the growing importance of Linux in developing and emerging countries.

For the price discounts to kick in and for PC makers to benefit from those prices, their machines must conform to a number of limitations: a non-touchscreen monitor lower than 10.2-inch, at most 1GB of memory, a storage capacity of not more than 80GB, a single core CPU running at most 1GHz - although there will be no penalty if processors like the 1.6GHz Intel Atom N270 are used.

Windows XP is scheduled to be phased out on the 30th of June; roughly during the same time period when several manufacturers like Asus, MSI, Acer and HP will announce their ultra cheap laptops.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.