Oracle has established a sister company to Liberate Technology, which was floated on the Stock Exchange last week, to sell set-top boxes to the education market.
Liberate, formerly known as Network Computer (NCI), was valued at more than $1bn since its flotation, but will continue to sell set-top boxes to the TV market. Its sister company, however, will sell set-top boxes that run a version of Linux open source, and Netscap to the education sector.
The Intel-based machines will come with pre-loaded applications and 64Mb of memory.
Larry Ellison, president and chief executive of Oracle, said: "The world needs internet-based PCs, so we're starting a company to sell them.
"But you'll upgrade your software by adding a CD in a case. The machine will be easy to use and it will cost less than Microsoft Office," he added.
While Oracle is developing the prototypes, the database company has not yet decided which supplier it will contract to build the products.
The set-top machines will cost $150 without a monitor and $250 with one.
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