Aakash 2 Tablet – Affordable But Will It Be Successful?

by December 28, 2012 0 comments

Aakash 2 TabletThe all new Aakash 2 Tablet was launched in India by Datawind in association with the HRD Ministry. Datawind has been assigned the authority to design, develop and market this product. The company had won the tender to make and sell one lakh Aakash 2 Tablets at the price of $49 per unit. This new version has some updated features as compared to the previous version of the tablet.

This is a low cost model of Aakash and is available at a reduced price of Rs 1,130 for students of India and at a price of Rs 2,263 for the HRD Ministry. However, the commercial version of this tablet is marketed at Rs 4,499 and is branded as UBi Slate 7Ci. This low cost model was unveiled at the United Nations this November in the presence of UN Secretary General. This advanced version of Aakash Tablet was launched by the President of India on the occasion of the National Education Day on 11, November, 2012.

The fresh Aakash 2 tablet comes equipped with a 1 GHz Cortex A8 processor whereas the original Aakash tablet was engineered by a processor of 366 MHz. It has a battery back up of up to 4 hours. The new model has a 7 inch screen along with 4 multi touch points and exhibits a display resolution of 800 x 480 pixels, while the earlier model has a 7 inch display with a resistive touch screen.

The key features of the new Aakash 2 tablets are:

  • RAM capacity of 512 MB
  • 7 inch multi touch capacitive screen
  • USB port
  • Internal memory capacity of 4 GB which can be accentuated up to a limit of 32 GB with the aid of a micro SD card.
  • Processor of 1 GHz A8 Cortex
  • Wi-Fi
  • Front facing camera

Apart from the above characteristics, the new tablet runs on Android 4.0 operating system whereas the previous model featured Android 2.2 operating system. This new model was made available by the Government to the Indian students at a subsidised rate in an initiative to make computing devices affordable and accessible to them. However, the project led to a controversy after IIT Rajasthan rejected the devices produced by Datawind.
The Government claims that this project will help to bridge the digital gap existing in India. However, amidst all the hype about this new product, the news is that that the students had to wait for a long time before they could get delivery of this item. The Indian Government has announced that the first phase of this tablet addresses the issue of ‘testing and empowerment of teachers’ and that there are no plans in store to make this project available to poorer students from rural areas.

In order to narrow down the digital divide in the country, the Government needs to focus more on rural areas and the financially backward students by providing them with this digital device. It remains a question as to whether the Government has done it correctly by keeping away the Indian students from the first lot of delivery of this product.







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