Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Sakshat Tablet

Some time back, we reported the delay of the unique $35 Sakshat tablet, targeted for the student market. Now, the ultra low cost tablet, produced by Indian manufacturer HCL, is ready to ship. IIT Rajasthan will be getting the first batch of 10,000 tablets in late June, which is now announced to be priced at $50 (Rs. 2200 to be exact), though will be subsidized by 50%, thus bringing its price to Rs. 1100.
The project was a result of the collaboration between the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) and four IITs, and its aim was to bridge the digital divide among the students in India. The tablet will be subsided by the indian government and will sold to educational institutions in India and will not be available in retail.
The notable features of the tablet include that it is powered by Linux, comes with 2 GB memory, has a touch screen including an inbuilt keyboard, Wi-Fi connectivity, computing capabilities such as OpenOffice and SciLab, and has a power rating of merely 2 Watts so that it can be used in low power supply regions.
We are surely glad to see that the Sakshat project is finally up and running. Its specs are fairly impressive (given its usage for students) and with a price point of Rs. 1100, it can be a real opportunity for students who come from humbler backgrounds to be able to be a part of the Indian IT phenomenon, while boosting their productivity at school or college. This is a real feather in the cap for the Education Ministry, and is similar to the $100 laptops developed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the US.