India to debut $45 Android tablet for education

India to debut $45 Android tablet for education

Summary: Government scheduled to release Wednesday low-cost tablet, which will likely be sold through education institutes, according to report.


The India government will launch Wednesday a US$45 Google Android media tablet targeted at the education sector, said a report.

The 7-inch touchscreen tablet runs on the Android 2.2 mobile operating system and will have Wi-Fi and multimedia and videoconferencing capabilities, according to the AFP.

Specification-wise, the device will have 180 minutes of battery power, two USB ports and 32GB expandable memory, it said, but noted that the 256MB RAM (random access memory) might limit its performance.

According to the news agency, the low-cost tablet named Aakash, or Sky, will likely be sold through universities and colleges instead of retail channels.

Mamata Varma, spokeswoman for the human resources development ministry, told AFP that the device costs 2,200 rupees (US$45) and the first batch of 500 tablets will be available to students immediately after the launch. The ministry expects 700 of the tablets to be made every day with production picking up when more companies join in the manufacturing, she noted.

According to Reuters, the device will be sold to students at a subsidized price of US$35.

The prototype of the device was revealed last year and touted a US$35 price tag, according to a report by ZDNet Asia's sister site CNET. The low-cost device is part of the government's larger initiative aimed at improving India's educational system through technology, it said.

Other countries are also making efforts in pushing low-cost touchscreen devices for the educational sector. In Singapore, tertiary institute Nanyang Technological University has been working on a solar-powered tablet targeted at rural villages, a spokesperson told ZDNet Asia last year.

Topics: Tablets, Hardware, Mobility, India

Liau Yun Qing

About Liau Yun Qing

The only journalist in the team without a Western name, Yun Qing hails from the mountainy Malaysian state, Sabah. She currently covers the hardware and networking beats, as well as everything else that falls into her lap, at ZDNet Asia. Her RSS feed includes tech news sites and most of the Cheezburger network. She is also a cheapskate masquerading as a group-buying addict.

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  • Fantastic initiative by GOV. It would really help students to grow & country as well!!!!!!
  • Proud moment for India. This should do really well & will help India's students to be educated in a better way. Yes it may be limited with 256 MB Ram but is there anything closer to this device in terms of pricing & features ?? I dont think so.. What about all other features.. 7" Touch screen, wi fi, 2 USB ports etc. No one comes close to this tablet in terms of features & pricing. Yes this is no Ipad or Playbook but lets get real..for this price what do u expect ? And I am sure there will be improvements in this product in coming lets wait n see... Lets compare apples with apples... Best of all this is developed & made in India. When China can break price barriers.. So can India.
  • I still can't believe, a tab for 1700... would be waiting for it to be available for the masses.
  • I like this product
    i want it now.
    How could i get it faster..........
    pplz plz give me a solution.
    Rashed ahmed
  • Now ... if all the textbooks are available at the same cheap price it'll be perfect....