At this very moment, what is the cheapest tablet device?
Before you grapple with a question that you know we will answer, here’s the benchmark: $35. This is the cost of the tablet device produced by a company based in Bangalore, India, and the lowest we’ve found so far.
Of course you can’t expect it to be breaking new grounds with its speed and performance like it does in the price range, but this tablet isn’t a slouch either (or so we’ve heard from initial reports and videos). Running the Linux operating system, this mini tablet has a 2 GB RAM while connectivity options include a standard USB port along with WiFi and an ethernet port.
The touchscreen device will allow for Internet browsing, video conferencing and computing abilities like Open Office, SciLab and countless others. Besides this, the tablet is compliant with PDF format while also being able to play back YouTube videos. In fact, its makers revealed that the tablet will be able to play back both stored as well as streamed media files.
The tablet has been designed with academics in mind where it will act as an educational aid for both students and teachers. It has been developed by a team of researchers from the Indian Institute of Technology – Madras, the Indian Institute of Science – Bangalore and the University Grants Commission.
This low cost tablet is seen as a viable alternative to the One Laptop per Child’s XO and Classmate of Intel which also targeted the low cost computing segment to be used particularly for educational purposes. It was initially estimated to cost $100 apiece though the cost has shot up to $188 after the developmental work was over and it became ready to enter the market. The Classmate notebook PC – another device aimed at students – cost even higher at $300 per unit.
This new tablet, whose name we can not reveal because it doesn’t have one yet, could be ready to storm markets by early 2011. While it will be targeted towards teachers and students, there is no reason why the general public won’t be picking up the device as well. If nothing else, the astoundingly low price will attract even the least techno-savvy among us. The Indian Government is also willing to provide enough subsidies to make the cost of the tablet even more sweet and juicy, estimating a price drop to $20 and possibly as low as $10.
Just think of it, 10 bucks is all we will need to own a tablet device. Hopefully it becomes a reality soon.
Sovan Mandal is the senior tablet and tech corespondent for goodereader.com. He brings a international approach to news that is not just applicable to the North American market, but also Asia, India, Europe and others. Sovy brings his own writing flavor to the website and is interested in Science Fiction, Technology and Writing. Any questions, send an email