The Indian government was talking about a cheap and affordable “tablet for the poor” since last year. Earlier this month it was finally introduced, the world’s cheapest tablet, the Aakash Android tablet. An Indian company together with a Canadian company called DataWind designed the 7-inch Android tablet which will be produced in India. It has been reported, that more than 8 million devices have been ordered by the Indian Government which will be produced by March 2012.
With local taxes and warrantees the device will be sold for $38. In November, the tablet will go on sale commercially. We might see DataWind bring the devices into other countries and markets than India in the near future. see full specs and hands-on video below.
Today, only 8% of India’s 1.2 billion population have Internet access. One major factor for this low number is the lack of low-cost devices. In comparison, China has 35 percent of their 1.35 billion population “online”. Sounds better? But still far behind compared to Europe with 58 percent or North America with even 78 percent of the population online. (source: via internetworldstats March 31 2011)
“The rich have access to the digital world, the poor and ordinary have been excluded. Aakash will end that digital divide,” Telecoms and Education Minister Kapil Sibal Times of India.
Aakash 7-inch Android Tablet Hands-On Video
Aakash 7-inch Android Tablet full specs:
Screen: 7-inches; 800×400 pixels; Resistive touchscreen
Operating system: Android 2.2, Froyo
Processor: 366 MHz Connexant; HD Video co-processor (both with graphics accelerators)
Memory: 256MB RAM (internal); 2GB Flash (external)
Storage: 2GB card included, expandable up to 32GB
Ports: 2 x USB 2.0 – 3.5mm headphone jack (audio jack); 3.5mm microphone jack (audio in jack) (No built-in speakers)
Connection: GPRS; Wi-Fi 802.11 a,b,g
Power: 2100 mAh battery (up to 180 minutes); AC adapter, 200-240 volt
Weight: 350 grams