As expected, Government of India’s is over-ambitious project to supply Aakash tablets at cheap prices to students in India, seem almost grounded because of various hiccups. But Aakash’s loss may be gains for other companies who have come out with economically priced tablets, which are not as cheap as Aakash is supposed to be, but they will be readily available in few weeks.
International education company AcrossWorld along with Delhi-based Go-Tech would launch a tablet, called ATabin, on Android platform, priced at Rs. 5000/-, in the second week of March. The seven-inch android touchscreen tablet will have a three-year free access to education technology platform ‘EducationBridge’ which allows academic institutions, teachers and students to use a variety of content and educational resources through a software called open source.
The ATab uses Google’s Android OS and is powered by a 1.1 GHz processor. It comes with 512 MB of RAM and 2 GB of inbuilt memory, expandable up to 16 GB. AcrossWorld says that the WiFi tablet will also come with an external 3G USB dongle, but does not mention whether the price of the dongle is included in the Rs. 5,000. The tablet will be available in five colour options.
ATab will launch in India with 10,000 units and the company says it will scale up availability later. According to company officials, about a dozen schools and colleges from various Indian cities such as Delhi, Kanpur, Allahabad, Rourkela and Gaujarala have indicated keen interest in the tablet.
Indian handset player Micromax is also set to launch an Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) based tablet in the next two weeks. Micromax’s 7″ inch tablet is expected to be launched in the next 15 days and will come pre loaded with exclusive content related to entertainment and education. The device is expected to be priced around Rs. 15,000. The upcoming Micromax tablet will have a 7″ inch capacitive touchscreen and WiFi connectivity. It will also have an HDMI slot.
Apart from the tablet, Micromax will launch another affordable dual SIM Android smartphone , A 78, for Rs. 8,000 in March this year. This smartphone will have a 3.5″ inch capacitive display, and will be powered by Android 2.3 operating system. Besides, it will have a touchpad and a Qwerty keypad.
Economically priced tablets and smartphones will change the scenario in India and in the coming months, everybody will have the opportunity to buy these devices according to his/her budget.