Dell, Microsoft to Launch Product RED Computer

Dell and Microsoft this week at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, are expected to announce the launch of a Product RED computer to benefit the Global Fund To Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, Reuters reports. Dell on Friday will begin selling two Product RED laptops and one desktop computer that run Microsoft Windows Vista. The companies will provide the Global Fund with $50 for each laptop sold and $80 for each desktop. The computers were designed in part by Irish musician and Product RED co-founder Bono.

Microsoft said that it expects "several hundred thousand" of the Dell computers to be sold in 2008. After the computers go on sale on Jan. 25 in the U.S., they will be available in 30 additional countries on Jan. 31. Product RED has raised about $53 million for the Global Fund since it was launched in 2006 (Wakabayashi, Reuters, 1/23).

Bono, Gore Discuss Development Issues
In related news, Bono and former Vice President Al Gore on Thursday during a session at the World Economic Forum discussed issues surrounding development and climate change. "There are now two million Africans" with access to antiretroviral drugs and "that is pretty astonishing," Bono said, adding that commitments made by the Group of Eight industrialized nations at its 2005 summit in Gleneagles, Scotland, regarding aid to Africa have not been met. "Well, that's not so good, and it's strange because the good news makes the bad news even worse," Bono said, adding that the G8 is "not making good" on its commitments.

According to Bono, there are some encouraging signs, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel's pledge that she will advocate for a recommitment to the Gleneagles targets. In addition, Bono said that French President Nicolas Sarkozy earlier this month promised to meet the country's development pledges. The G8 has provided about half of the $50 billion in annual aid to Africa pledged at Gleneagles, Bono said. Gore during the session said that efforts aimed at curbing climate change and global warming need to be increased. "We are putting at risk all of human civilization," Gore said, adding, "With a global compact, the world can solve the climate crisis, with a global compact the world can solve the poverty crisis" (Jahn, AP/, 1/24).

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