The much talked about low cost tablet, developed by IIT Rajasthan and DataWind under the Human Resource ministry of India, has been launched with a price tag of Rs 2,250. The retail version will be launched in November with price of Rs 2,999.
The tablet surprisingly has very decent specifications, and is based on Android 2.2 Froyo operating system. While it has a very small processor of 366 MHz unit (from Conexant) but to improve performance there is a HD video Co-Processor and graphic accelerator and 256 MB RAM. The retail version to be launched in November will have faster 600 MHz processor from ST Micro electronics.
The touchscreen is a 7 inch unit and uses resistive touch technology, which is not as good as the capacitive screens but is okay considering the price.
Connectivity options include built in WiFi support and ability to connect a data card for 3G and GPRS connectivity. There are two full USB ports, and Aakash has a 2 GB in built memory and comes along with a 2 GB MicroSD. The tablet supports external memory up to 32 GB. USB port can also be used to attach external camera.
The browser used in the tablet is UBI Surfer, which has been developed by DataWing and is claimed to be 10 times faster than any other mobile browser. The tablet will also come with Nimbuzz (a chat application) pre-installed. The tablet weighs 350 grams and comes with stereophonic headset.
Initially, the government will distribute 1 lakh Aakash tablets among schools across the country. The retail version which will be priced slightly higher at Rs 2,999 will be available from November.
The tablet will come along with a leather case which will not just protect the tablet but will also act as a keyboard case, so that tablet can be used as a netbook as well.
DataWing also plans to launch an Android smartphone, details for which are not yet available. But, if the price of this tablet is any indication, this smartphone will have similar hardware but a price of around Rs 2,000.