Microsoft has announced the upcoming release of Windows XP Starter Edition (XPSE),
a new version of Windows XP (Windows XP Starter Edition) for emerging markets.
The product will be made available in India early next year. The company also
unveiled the Hindi version of Windows XP Starter Edition, which is a low-cost
and lighter version of Windows aimed at Linux and countering rampant piracy in
The Starter Edition will come with a Hindi interface, and will include
resources such as help and training in Hindi as well. This makes India one of
the five countries in this star-ter program. The Union Mini-ster for
Communication ad IT Dayanidhi Maran unveiled the product at New Delhi.
Maran urged Microsoft to reduce prices of all its software and, in fact, he
felt that "Micro-soft should give the main XP software free" and
should not reduce the functionality of Windows XP Starter Edition and also
develop networking into the product.
Starting early 2005, Win-dows XP Starter Edition based low-cost desktop PCs
will be made available through OEM partners and distributors across India. Over
the next few months, Microsoft India will work closely with its OEM partners and
the Government of India to decide the finer points of the distribution
mechanism. Specific pricing information too will be made available to
participating PC OEMs and Microsoft Authori-zed OEM distributors in the coming
weeks. Elaborating on the offering, Microsoft Corp India Pvt Ltd MD Rajiv Kaul
said that Windows XP Starter Edi-tion features include localized and tailored
support, localized customization, Preconfigured settings and simplified task
Speaking on the occasion, HCL Infosystems chairman and CEO Ajai Chowdhry
said, "If this government wants a GDP growth of eight percent, IT has to
play a key role. Affordable computing with local language software and high
quality Internet access is very critical for growth and PC penetration, as has
happened in China."
Its Cheap And Its Crippled This edition of Windows XPSE is severely limited:
only three applications can be run at a time. So if a user is running Windows
Messenger and an email program and any anti virus, etc, he can't open a Web
When asked about this limitation, Microsoft officials said that according to
the research that they had done this is sufficient for a first time user. But
right now they do not have any solution in the offing if a user wants to
increase the number of apps used on his computer. The officials also added that
the product is still in its testing stage and research is still on with
computers being placed in and if the company feels that the need is there to add
more apps it would do so.