India set to upgrade 'cheapest' tablet

2012-06-26 21:23
<a href="http://www.shutterstock.com">Shuttertstock</a>

Shuttertstock

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Mumbai - India is set to release an upgrade of its ultra-low-cost computer tablet, the "Aakash-2" at $40, after the first edition was criticised for its quality and distribution.

The device was unveiled last year as the "computer for the masses" in India, where millions struggle to fund their education, but as yet the tablet has failed to live up to the hype and reached only a tiny number of colleges.

The Aakash-2 comes with improved features including a longer battery life, a faster processor at 800 Mhz and a better quality touch screen, according to the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay which is testing the device.

Distribution of 100 000 new tablets to engineering colleges will begin next month, IIT Bombay spokesperson Jaya Joshi said on Tuesday.

The device, which has a price tag of 2 263 rupees ($40), is designed to allow students to interact in video lectures, submit assignments, complete online quizzes and write and run programs.

"In coming years, Aakash is likely to become a ubiquitous tool in the hands of students, at all levels of their education," said Professor Deepak Phatak, heading up the project, in a release from IIT Bombay.

Original

The original Aakash, dubbed the world's cheapest tablet, was launched in October 2011, but a Right to Information request filed by digital media blog MediaNama showed that only 572 tablets were distributed to just 19 colleges.

The magazine Forbes India also slammed the project this week.

"To put it mildly, the prototype was a disaster. Some phones in the market worked faster than this contraption," it said.

"Similar computing devices with superior capabilities are being brought out of Chinese factories by the thousands. India seems to have lost the plot."

Speaking via video link at a "symbolic launch" of the upgraded device on Monday, India's IT Minister Kapil Sibal said there had been "a sea change in the confidence" of the project since IIT Bombay took over three months ago.

"Unfortunately, there was some delay in taking this project forward for reasons that I don't want to go into now," he said.

 

Read more on:    india  |  technology

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

linking and moving

2015-04-22 07:36

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.