Walmart is now taking pre-orders for the XO Tablet. The 7 inch tablet comes from the folks behind the One Laptop per Child project, and it’s an inexpensive tablet aimed at kids and featuring an emphasis on educational software.
The tablet’s available for pre-order for $149, and the tablet is expected to ship August 1st.
The XO Tablet has a 7 inch screen, WiFi, and a removable rubberized case which helps protect the device from scuffs and falls.
It runs Google Android, and you can download and run apps from the Google Play Store. But what makes the XO Tablet different from most Android tablets is the custom user interface and software designed for kids and parents.
The default software offers access to videos, games, books, and other software, and includes a Journal app which lets parents see how much time their kids are spending on different activities.
There are also parental controls which let you limit the apps and content your kids can access, and support for up to 3 user profiles per device which you can use to customize apps and parental controls on a per-user basis.
When I got a chance to look at a prototype earlier this year, the XO Tablet was powered by a 1 GHz Marvell Armada processor and had 512MB of RAM, 4GB of storage, and a 7 inch, 1024 x 600 pixel display.
I can’t tell if those specs have changed in the past half year, because the website and Walmart item listing don’t really dwell on the tablet’s hardware. Instead the emphasis is on the software.
The XO Tablet is hardly the first tablet designed for kids. Fuhu, Ematic, and Archos all make Android tablets aimed at children and teens. But the XO is a bit unusual thanks to the OLPC Foundation’s pedigree in developing low-cost devices and software for students in developing (and developed) nations.