India launches British-made Aakash tablet priced at $34

By Lee Kaelin on October 6, 2011, 11:00 AM

A new tablet co-produced by Datawind in the UK is set to launch in India, aiming to reduce the digital divide by offering affordable computing and thus getting the device into the hands of some of the world's poorest people. The almost unbelievably cheap Datawind Aakash will be available for just $34 (£22) to students, and $60 (£39) to everyone else, making it the world's cheapest tablet by a healthy margin.

The tablet is about the size of a paperback book and uses a resistive touchscreen, so gestures will not work on it, but at the price it's set for I doubt that will be an issue. Other notable features include a SD card slot fitted with a 2GB card and supporting up to 32GB capacities, two USB ports, Wi-Fi, video conferencing, 3-hour battery life, 600MHz processor, 256MB RAM and it will be running Android 2.2.

Datawind also intends to launch a slightly more expensive "commercial" version named the UbiSlate in December that will include a cellular modem, enabling it to access online content anywhere there is mobile phone reception. It will also enable the tablet to function as a mobile phone.

Kapil Sibai, India's human resource development minister handed out 500 of the tablets to lucky students for testing, and stated that the government plans to distribute over 10 million units to students over the next couple of years.

"Our goal was to break the price barrier for computing and internet access. We've created a product that will finally bring affordable computing and internet access to the masses," Sibai said when recently speaking about the tablets. "This is not only a concept that applies to India, but has ignited the imaginations of governments around the world. The Aakash is proudly made in India, and is destined to revolutionise computing and internet access for the world."

India has committed to 100,000 orders at the slightly increased price of $45 (£29), on the agreement that future orders will be for the lower $34 price.

User Comments: 19

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tehbanz tehbanz said:

wonder if they plan on a global release, would love a cheap tablet for reading books!

coolazeem said:

The official website for the tablet

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Wonder how much they're losing on those. You know damn well it takes more than $34 to make one.

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

TomSEA said:

Wonder how much they're losing on those. You know damn well it takes more than $34 to make one.

Yeah, there must be some subsidizing going on. Even with labor costs of zero, you still have to buy the components. Unless they're making zero profit.

Cota Cota said:

I call overstock products wipe out, but still its a very smart tablet for making only what you really need and not what you believe you need

Guest said:

It is Co-Produced by Datawind UK, but assembling and actual manufacturing is being done in Indian city of Hyderabad.

So it's a made in India Product not British made.

Please correct your title.

Please watch this fr proof

SNGX1275 SNGX1275, TS Forces Special, said:

I should talk to some of my fellow grad students that are Indian, have them have a friend or family member buy one and then ship it to me

intelinside said:

I think it'll do well for first couple of quarters and then die miserably like TATA Nano.

Beware of cheap products!!!

Seraphim401 Seraphim401 said:

tehbanz said:

wonder if they plan on a global release, would love a cheap tablet for reading books!

You read my mind.

Guest said:

It probably doesn't take more than $34 to make a tablet, actually.

Royalgok said:

Such specs for that cheap a price is surprising. Like to see what it's like. I'm from Sri Lanka which is practically next door to India so should be able to get my hands on one of these

The Minister's name is Kapil Sibal, btw, with an L. He's the Minister for Communications and IT, not HR development.

Guest said:

LOL! He's HRD Minister AS WELL AS Comm. Minister in the wake of suspension of A.Raja

Guest said:

people would not content even if they get cheap tablet with 3hour battery capacity

see some of student face not show glad face when they open this tablet package,

it is better that India should more invest in making Tablet factory in India and produce for their own people good quality with cheap price . India has a lot of economic to developed the same as china

Guest said:

Why would we offer cheap devices only for the poor? Why can't all be able to buy inexpensive products, can we lower prices just because someone is poor? What do the rich get? Isn't that discrimination?

Guest said:

hey stop all those we INDIANS going to rock the whole world soon not only in education but in research and development also beware and be aware of us . soon going to over take US and developing CHINA

hey people of other nations make a note within 10 years all nations will depend on INDIA that time u ll say " INDIA the great " now too ur giant companies are coming to our country to sell all things

becoz of money money money

Guest said:

So the whole world will come to give to you, but what do you offer the world?

Guest said:

Hope they are not pulling any Scam through this as this would really going to effect our image at global standards

Guest said:

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