Chuck Talk writes "Chief Software Architect Bill Gates of Microsoft has proposed that computer hardware will be very nearly free (as in terms of costs) within 10 years. I would say that if Mr. Gates prediction comes true, then we would have achieved the best of both worlds when we can marry low-cost hardware with low-cost and powerful software, such as that provided by the Open Source and GNU/Linux operating platform. I am not so certain that Mr. Gates would agree with that though.
Reuters, in the article linked above, quoted Mr. Gates as having this to say:
"Ten years out, in terms of actual hardware costs you can almost think of hardware as being free -- I'm not saying it will be absolutely free -- but in terms of the power of the servers, the power of the network will not be a limiting factor."