Although I don’t usually endorse dirt-cheap Android devices, the Aakash line of Indian educational tablets may be worthy of an exception. The idea of placing a tablet in the hands of every Indian student is definitely controversial, but on a personal note, I do find the program useful to some extent. It’s in this context that Datawind have announced a couple of upgraded versions of the Ubislate / Aakash tablet, soon bound to enter the market: the Ublislate 7+ and the Ubislate 7C.
Given that the new line of Aakash tablets will retail for somewhere around $75, I’m sure nobody expects these slates to sport any of the latest technological advancements. Unfortunately, such expectations are met from the first glance at the spec sheet. Under the hood of both of these 7-inch 800 x 480 bad boys, you’ll find a single core processor, clocked at 800MHz, and just 256MB of RAM.
The only difference between the Ubislate 7+ and the Ublislate 7C is the introduction of a capacitive display on the 7C (thus the C in the name) instead of the outdated resistive display on the 7+. Both tablets will ship with Android 2.3 Gingerbread (I wouldn’t expect an upgrade anytime soon, as, so far, Datawind has announced ICS for future models only). Both tablets come with 2.5G connectivity, as well as Wi-Fi. For 3G connectivity, you’ll have to purchase a separate dongle accessory.
If you’re a student in India, the government will subsidize half of the cost, thus enabling you to purchase an Ublislate 7+ for just $35, as is the case with the current Aakash model. I know students don’t usually have much money to spare, but if given a chance, I’d definitely buy a $35 Android tablet. It’s not slim, it’s not powerful, but the specs should suffice for some limited web browsing and other low key activities.
What do you guys think? Is the Aakash Android tablet program an initiative that other governments should adopt as well? Drop us a line in the comment section below!