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Intel to wire in poor nations

Intel aims to bring high-speed wireless net access to 1 bn people, and train 10 mn teachers to use tech in education.

india Updated: May 02, 2006 13:25 IST

Intel Corp Said on Tuesday that it plans to spend $1 billion to promote Internet use and computer training in developing countries, the latest move in the No 1 chip maker's effort to break into new markets.

The program, which Intel has dubbed "World Ahead," aims to bring high-speed wireless Internet access to 1 billion people who can't get online, while training 10 million teachers to use technology in education.

The Santa Clara, California-based company said it would back those goals with $1 billion of spending over five years.

"Decades of providing technology in growing volume and at decreasing costs have driven great gains for developing nations, communities and people worldwide, but there is still much to do," Intel chief executive Paul Otellini said in a statement.

Otellini is expected to give details of the initiative at a technology conference in Austin, Texas, on Wednesday.

The program includes Intel's ongoing effort to promote cheap PCs that it hopes will find enthusiastic buyers among schools and villages in developing countries where most people cannot afford to buy their own personal computers.

It also extends Intel's push to popularise a new wireless technology called WiMax, whose fast speed and long range has led many companies and industry groups to think it is ideal for poorer regions.

Intel, which makes the microprocessors that power the vast majority of personal computers around the world, has grappled with slowing growth in PCs as wealthy markets in the United States, Europe and Japan become saturated.

First Published: May 02, 2006 13:25 IST