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Old 5th October 2011, 18:27   #1
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Lightbulb Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

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Following last week’s announcement made by the Minister of Communications and IT, Kapil Sibal, the Indian Government’s $35 computing device, which has been named Aakash has finally been unveiled.The Android based tablet has been designed, developed and manufactured by DataWind in collaboration with IIT Rajasthan, under the HRD Ministry’s National Mission on Education through Information & Communication Technology (NME-ICT).

According to a press statement, the Government is buying 100,000 tablets from DataWind for Rs 2,250 or $45.5 (approx), per unit inclusive of taxes and freight charges. The tablet will be available to post-secondary students, and the Indian Government intends to deliver 10 million tablets at a target price of Rs 1,750 per unit, which has also been agreed upon by the manufacturer. The device has been made at DataWind’s facility at Hyderabad.

Although the Minister did mention that masses of course content had been web-enabled for free distribution and over 1,000 institutions have been equipped with high-speed WiFi internet access, details about content delivery, partnerships, and time lines were not discussed.

Device Specs and Features

The device is essentially a 7 inch Android 2.2 based tablet, which offers data connectivity through WiFi, expandable memory via an SD card slot (a 2GB card is included), in addition to 2GB internal Flash memory, and full size USB Ports allowing the use of plug-in devices such as Pen-drives and internet dongles. The device sports a 366 Mhz Connexant processor, 256MB RAM, and also has an HD video co-processor for multimedia and core graphics accelerator for faster application support. The touch screen however, is resistive, which we believe, is to facilitate the use of styli for making notes.

The tablet also bundles DataWind’s UbiSurfer browser, which, according to the company is based on 18 international patents and accelerates web pages by factors of 10x to 30x. It also includes the Nimbuzz app, for social networking and instant messaging.

Mass Market Commercial Tablet

DataWind has also announced a commercially available mass market tablet, called UbiSlate, which will be available starting November 2011, at an MRP of Rs 2,999. The tablet will also feature a cellular modem, allowing users to make calls and access data, through the device.

Last edited by Bluengel180 : 5th October 2011 at 18:30.
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Old 5th October 2011, 18:38   #2
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

Website for Aakash UbiSlate is up and you can prebook the tablet on the site
Aakash Tablet India : UbiSlate Netbook : Datawind ubislate

Video Review by NDTV
http://www.ndtv.com/video/player/new...-tablet/212812

Features
  • Unbeatable Price:
    • Only Rs.2,999 for the UbiSlate
    • Monthly internet charges: Rs.98 / 2GB
  • High Quality Web Anytime & Anywhere:
    • Connect via GPRS or WiFi
    • GPRS: Embedded modem eliminates the need for external dongles and allows Internet access everywhere
    • WiFi: Allows fast Youtube videos at hotspots
    • Fast web access even on GPRS networks, across the country using DataWind’s patented acceleration technology
    • Web, Email, Facebook, Twitter and much much more!
  • Multimedia Powerhouse:
    • HD Quality Video
  • Watching movies in the palm of your hand on a 7” screen
    • Audio library software helps manage your full collection of songs
  • Applications Galore with Android 2.2:
    • Games
    • Productivity software: Office suite
    • Educational software
    • Over 150,000 apps!
  • Full sized-USB port & Micro-SD slot:
    • Expand memory to 32GB
    • Use any ordinary pen-drive
    • Even plug-in a 3G dongle
  • And It’s a Phone!
Configuration
  • Hardware:
    • Processor: Connexant with Graphics accelerator and HD Video processor
    • Memory (RAM): 256MB RAM / Storage (Internal): 2GB Flash
    • Storage (External): 2GB to 32GB Supported
    • Peripherals (USB2.0 ports, number): 1 Standard USB port
    • Audio out: 3.5mm jack / Audio in: 3.5mm jack
    • Display and Resolution: 7” display with 800x480 pixel resolution
    • Input Devices: Resistive touch screen
    • Connectivity and Networking: GPRS and WiFi IEEE 802.11 a/b/g
    • Power and Battery: Up to 180 minutes on battery. AC adapter 200-240 volt range.
  • Software:
    • OS: Android 2.2
    • Document Rendering
  • Supported Document formats: DOC, DOCX, PPT, PPTX, XLS, XLSX, ODT, ODP
  • PDF viewer, Text editor
  • Multimedia and Image Display
    • Image viewer supported formats: PNG, JPG, BMP and GIF
    • Supported audio formats: MP3, AAC, AC3, WAV, WMA
    • Supported video formats: MPEG2, MPEG4, AVI, FLV
  • Communication and Internet
    • Web browser - Standards Compliance: xHTML 1.1 compliant, JavaScript 1.8 compliant
    • Separate application for online YouTube video
    • Safety and other standards compliance
  • CE certification / RoHS certification
    • Other: Additional Web Browser: UbiSurfer-Browser with compression/acceleration and IE8 rendering.

Last edited by sushantr5 : 5th October 2011 at 18:40.
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Old 5th October 2011, 19:04   #3
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

Quote:
Unbeatable Price:
Only Rs.2,999 for the UbiSlate
Is that the MRP, anyone can buy off the shelf at that price or is it special price for Govt. as they are placing order for 100,000 units?

Last edited by HammerHead : 5th October 2011 at 19:06.
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Old 5th October 2011, 19:24   #4
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

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Originally Posted by HammerHead View Post
Is that the MRP, anyone can buy off the shelf at that price or is it special price for Govt. as they are placing order for 100,000 units?
Govt Price is Rs.2250. Of the shelves anybody can buy it for Rs.2,999.
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Old 7th October 2011, 15:07   #5
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

Looks like this is what it is.
UbiSlate Netbook : Overview for ubislate netbook: Datawind ubislate Netbook with free mobile internet and browser with acceleration technology
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Old 8th October 2011, 04:27   #6
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250


I think that price mentioned , 2999 is not true . If you try a preorder from the link given above , it says when the devices are ready to be shipped you card gets charged 99 pounds for the device and 6 pounds for shipping . That almost comes out to 8000 Rupees . IMO its better to buy a spice Mi 720 which is available for 11000 rupees and has better specs .
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Old 8th October 2011, 13:15   #7
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

1. What are possibilities of a custom ROM / GIngerbread / ICS upgrade??

2. Most educational institutions prohibit use of cell phones on campus. What about this one?

3. I understand this has "standard" USB ports. Does this mean USB host functionality has come to hand helds?

Looking at the whois information and hosting provider info, Ubi* and akash / sakshat seem to be corporate cloaks. I get cynical when I see corporate cloaks. Especially when same product is advertised a disparate prices.
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Old 14th December 2011, 18:51   #8
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

The tablet is available online with cash on delivery option
Aakash Tablet - Official Website

Where can we get demo of the tablet ? Is the touch screen as good as Samsung Galaxy ?
I dare not compare this with iPad for the price which they are selling.
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Old 14th December 2011, 19:03   #9
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

@athanedar,

The touch screen is resistive whereas the touch screen on high-priced tablets such as the iPad is capacitive, so right there you can tell the difference. The 800x480 resolution will make it apparent that there has been a lot of cost cutting here - most web pages are aimed at at-least 1024 pixel width so the device would be closer to a mobile device with an over-sized screen rather than a netbook replacement.

However, with WiFi and support for 3G dongles (I imagine you would have to tinker with the settings to get the dongle working as the automatic setup that most ISPs provide only works on Windows) makes this a real steal at Rs.3k. The Reliance tablet probably costs Rs.8k, doesn't it?
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Old 14th December 2011, 19:06   #10
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

I have seen this thing and used it for 15 mins.

My friend is a Lecturer in a Govt College and they recieved these as samples to test. Everything is decent considering the price but the touch screen was just downright horrible. I mean bad to the extent that it made the device useless. But if you can live with that for the price nothing beats this thing. It is primarily aimed at students and I would give it to the government for this initiative. How useful it proves I am not sure but atleast some thought.
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Old 5th January 2012, 07:53   #11
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Default Review.

Aakash Tablet: Why I REGRET buying it! - Rediff Getahead
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Old 5th January 2012, 19:58   #12
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachit.K.Dogra View Post
Everything is decent considering the price but the touch screen was just downright horrible. I mean bad to the extent that it made the device useless.
Hi!

I haven't had a chance to use the Aakash yet, so was wondering - what about the screen made the usability poor? Were the touches inaccurate? Did they provide calibration software with the device? Is there a possibility of attaching a mouse to the USB port to use it?

I have a capacitive touch screen on my iPhone and a resistive touch screen on my Navman GPS and I do find touching the resistive screen to be a little less accurate though I don't find the capacitive touch screen very usable when links or buttons are placed too close to one another.
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Old 6th January 2012, 10:52   #13
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

Quote:
Originally Posted by k_nitin_r View Post
Hi!

I haven't had a chance to use the Aakash yet, so was wondering - what about the screen made the usability poor? Were the touches inaccurate? Did they provide calibration software with the device? Is there a possibility of attaching a mouse to the USB port to use it?

I have a capacitive touch screen on my iPhone and a resistive touch screen on my Navman GPS and I do find touching the resistive screen to be a little less accurate though I don't find the capacitive touch screen very usable when links or buttons are placed too close to one another.
Actually to be honest I did not spend much time with the device because I could not even navigate away from the first screen. I would not want to genralize as it might be that particular peice but I would definately say the touch was so poor it made navigation a pain. My friend who had the device told me you have to apply some pressure in your touch to make the device recognize it. To tell you the truth even he has not used that device for more than a day. It is lying in box.
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Old 6th January 2012, 11:06   #14
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachit.K.Dogra View Post
My friend who had the device told me you have to apply some pressure in your touch to make the device recognize it.
The screen on the Akash tablet is a resistive touch screen so you need some pressure for it to register the touch. It is along the lines of the GPS navigation devices which also have resistive touch screens. These are much cheaper than capacitive touch screens and are essential to bring the tablet to its price point.

BTW, if your friend would like to sell the tablet, there are lots of takers - the tablet has been sold out till March! :-)
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Old 6th January 2012, 11:12   #15
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Default Re: Indian Govt’s $35 Tablet Finally Launches As Aakash; Costs Rs 2250

Quote:
Originally Posted by k_nitin_r View Post
The screen on the Akash tablet is a resistive touch screen so you need some pressure for it to register the touch. It is along the lines of the GPS navigation devices which also have resistive touch screens. These are much cheaper than capacitive touch screens and are essential to bring the tablet to its price point.

BTW, if your friend would like to sell the tablet, there are lots of takers - the tablet has been sold out till March! :-)
Even I am used to Resistive Touch Screen devices. My earlier phone had a resistive touch but this one is worse. The device does not belong to my friend. He is a lecturer in a Government College and he has got this as a sample to test.
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