The much-hyped $35 tablet announced by the Indian government is on track, and is expected to arrive before January 10, 2011. LiveMint is reporting that the contract for manufacturing the low-end tablet has been awarded to HCL Technologies Ltd, which will be manufacturing 100,000 units.
Back in July, India’s HRD (Human Resource Development) minister had created a flutter by promising to deliver an Android tablet to students for just $35. Initially, in spite of the hands on demo provided by Mr Kapil Sibbal, many pundits maintained that the tablet was priced too aggressively to become a reality. Nevertheless, this announcement should help the device in shedding its vaporware status.
IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) Rajasthan has been tasked with carrying out intensive laboratory and field tests across the country. The government is hoping to make the affordable portable computing device available to university level students from the second half of next year.
The ambitious touchscreen tablet which runs on Android OS also has a camera and 2GB or RAM. It also contains several ports including USB port, Mini SD card slot along with a SIM card slot for 3G access. The device is both Wi-Fi and 3G enabled, so you can easily use it on the go.
The 7" and 9" Android based laptop can also be run on solar power besides the batter operated system. It has also got an virtual keyboard and a stylus for more touch screen comfort. It also has a eBook reader.
Indian HRD minister Kapil Sibal has promised that the gadget will be made available exclusively for Indian students for a price of Rs. 1,500. The minister has also promised that million of units of the $35 laptop/tablet will be produced soon. There was no fixed date as to when it would be unveiled in the retail market.
Here is an hands-on video of the Indian $35 tablet/laptop and interview with the HRD minister Kapil Sibal whose dream and vision was used in creating the device.
What do you think about the $35 laptop? Would you purchase it when it released in the Indian retail market, or would you rather go and buy a high end laptop from other popular manufactures. After all you hardly get any par Rs. 1,500 devices these days.