The Redmond software mammoth, Microsoft is on the offensive to dominate the low-cost PC market and this come with both good and bad things. The bad part would be the restrictions put in for manufacturers who want to get Windows XP Home Edition licenses for their low-cost laptops. Apparently, Microsoft will give out OSes only for machines that have a screen of up to 10.2-inches with 1GB of RAM and a 80 GB hard drive. By doing this Microsoft is trying to make sure that the low-cost laptops won't come to close to value notebooks running Windows Vista, an OS which the Redmond company is very fond of currently.
Still, those complying with the hardware specs will be able to get Windows XP at some low prices - $26 for systems distributed in emerging markets and $32 for laptops sold everywhere else. It's not a win-win situation for consumers but it we'll manage.