Aakash: World’s Cheapest Tablet Launched in India
The Indian government has finally managed to bring out the much hyped $35 tablet. The tablet which was named Sakshat, has been renamed to Aakash (which means sky in Hindi). The government has managed to keep up its promise of pricing the tablet as less as possible.
For over an year, the $35 tablet has seen a lot of flip-flops in terms of its manufacturing cost, manufacturer and the design. Many Tech bloggers around the world had even questioned the authenticity of this tablet, questioning the logic of pricing a tablet with a camera, USB ports etc for less than $50.
Aakash Tablet – Specifications
But now, the $35 tablet is a reality. It runs on Android 2.2 Froyo and comes with a 7 inch resistive touch screen with 256MB RAM, 2GB memory card and two USB ports.
- 7″ resistive touch screen (at 800×480 pixel resolution)
- 366 Mhz Connexant processor
- 256MB RAM
- 2GB internal Flash memory
- 2 USB Ports
- Weighs 350gm
- 2100mAH battery
- 3.5mm audio jack
The software of Aakash tablet is powered by Android 2.2 and it will come with some pre-loaded apps like Office Suite, media player, Nimbuzz etc. However, Aakash will not have access to the Android Marketplace which is quite a letdown for many. The tablet will come with Ubisoft browser which is supposed to accelerate the web pages considerably.
Below is a cheat-sheet circulated by the manufacturer comparing various tablets available in India (via @rajatagr)
Aakash tablet – Price & Availability
Aakash has been manufactured by UK based company, DataWind in collaboration with IIT Rajasthan. The tablet has been manufactured completely in India (no Chinese relations). The Indian government is buying 100,000 tablets from DataWind for Rs 2,250 (approx $45) per unit and will make it available to post-secondary students across India. The Government considers this to be a field-trial and hopes to deliver 10 million tablets at a target price of Rs 1,750 ($35) per unit, which has also been agreed upon by the manufacturer.
UbiSlate – Commercial version of Aakash
DataWind has also announced the commercial version of Aakash tablet to be sold in India soon which would have no duty waivers or subsidy as in Government’s version and will come with added features like an in-built cellular modem and SIM to access internet.
DataWind Ubislate will be available from November for Rs 2999 (approx $60). Interested users will be able to buy Ubsilate online or in retail stores then. DataWind hopes to improve the tablet and says that the next version of UbiSlate will have a 600Mhz dual-core processor.
Update: Pre-order/Buy Aakash/Ubislate
Buy Aakash/Ubislate7 Tablet Online
As promised, here is an update on pre-ordering Ubislate7 (commercial version of Aakash) online. Visit aakashtablet.com and fill up the form on the homepage to book your device. For now, users can book the device. We expect the actual pre-ordering and buying option to be added soon. As mentioned before, ubislate7 would cost Rs. 2999.[via]WSJ