Monday, October 10, 2011

India's $35 USD Tablet Computer

In Hindi the word "aakash" means "sky"
A few days ago news hit about the release of the Aakash tablet, a computer that costs less than $35 USD per unit to manufacture. The idea behind the computer is to introduce modern communications technologies into India's rural communities, and specifically to facilitate the education of children living in poverty. At a press conference for the release of the computer, Indian Human Resources Development Minister Kapil Sibal announced, "Today we reach to the sky and demonstrate what is possible ... Let me send a message, not just to our children but the children of the world ... This is for all those who are marginalized."

Initially envisioned as a $10 solar-powered device, the Aakash is nevertheless an incredible technological achievement. The computer offers a colour touchscreen, 2 GB of internal memory that's expandable via an internal microSD card reader, 256 MB of RAM, and two USB slots. In terms of software the tablet runs off a version of Android 2.2 and features word processing, web browsing, video conferencing, and multimedia capabilities. 

I'm no expert but given the $35 production cost (and price point for students and teachers) I am positively flabbergasted by those stats. On the one hand it really drives home the disparity between production and consumer costs of devices made by certain popular electronics producers. On the other hand, it's an admirable humanitarian gesture on the parts of both developer DataWind and the Indian government (granted I'm ignoring a multitude of potential/probable ulterior motivations, but lets just focus on the warm and fuzzy aspects of this news for a moment, shall we?).

(Via reddit)

1 comment:

  1. great price. i looking for to buy it, i don't know from where to buy.