Usually, it's China that comes to mind when we think of ultra cheap, low cost devices. India, however, for the past few years, seem to be inching forward in designing low cost computing devices.
The latest in this caravan is the new computing device launched by the India's Ministry of Human Resource Development. Priced at just Rs.1,500 ($35), this one is way cheaper than the $75 OLPC (One Laptop Per Child) option. This Rs.1,500 device has the form factor of a tablet and supposedly has a 7-inch touchscreen display. It is capable of browsing the web and comes with a keyboard as well.
The specs look quite decent for something that is priced at Rs. 1,500. How about 2GB of RAM, Wi-Fi connectivity and a USB port? The tablet has been developed by the government in collaboration with premier scientific institutes like the IITs, IISc and VIT, Vellore.
Union Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal revealed that his ministry initially contacted various private sector companies for the development of the tablet. Almost all of them gave a lukewarm response to the proposal following which they contacted institutes for the research and development.
According to The Economic Times, the Ministry of Human Resource Development has plans to reduce the price of this device further down to just $10. If all goes well, we can expect these in the hands of many students by the end of this year.