A few weeks, back IBM and Canonical (the lead sponsor of Ubuntu Linux) announced a plan to deliver Linux desktops and software to Africa. At the time, I questioned why the offer wasn’t being made available in the U.S.
That changes today as IBM and Canonical are now announcing the launch of Linux and cloud-based desktop software in the U.S.
The effort was originally announced more than a year ago, in August of 2008 as the Microsoft-Free PC effort. The basic idea is to have an Linux OS, with IBM smart client applications called Open Collaboration Client Solution software (OCCS)(Lotus Symphony and Notes) for enterprise apps.
The solution that has now been announced for the U.S, leverages the IBM Client for Smart Work which includes the same set of IBM’s collaboration software. As to why IBM is marketing the solution to the U.S now, the answer is simple: Windows 7.
IBM and Canonical in their press release have stated that the cost of migrating to Windows 7 will be as much as $2,000 for most PC users, with hardware accounting for much of the expense. Linux (and specifically Ubuntu) together with the IBM software is according to the two partners, cheaper to deploy.