Lindows.com plans flat-fees for OEMs

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ComputerWire: IT Industry Intelligence

Linux distributor Lindows.com Inc is to introduce a flat-fee licensing plan to computer manufacturers for its forthcoming LindowsOS operating system.

In order to increase the number of original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), system builders, systems integrators and value-added resellers taking on its new desktop OS, the San Diego, California-based company is introducing subscription-based licensing for systems builders.

Instead of the usual per-unit fees, systems builders will pay a $500 monthly membership fee, which will entitle them to install the LindowsOS operating system on an unlimited number of computer systems. Lindows.com is also stating that there will be no volume commitments for system builders that sign up to the program, and no software activation codes requiring tracking and auditing.

The company points out that according to recent figures from research company IDC, 58% of the total PC market is provided for by "unbranded" PC computer vendors. This is a market that the company is eager to tap into with its version of the Linux operating system, which is designed to enable users to run some Microsoft applications unchanged. The company is also offering system builders immediate access to software, desktop customization, hardware burn-in tools, eligibility for LindowsOS certification and access to the company's Click-N-Run Warehouse application library.

LindowsOS is due for release later this year and will have a retail price of $99 per copy. US online store Walmart.com is already shipping Microtel PCs with LindowsOS pre-installed for between $299 and $599. They are believed to run the current SPX sneak preview of LindowsOS pre-tested and certified.

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