India will get yet another iteration of the mega-flop Akash tablet. With the counter at IV now, will the country finally have a decent tablet that actually helps with our productivity?
Akash Tablet III
The Akash tablet is the result of the low-cost-tablet program by the Indian government, which has so far been nothing but a massive flop. While Akash I was discarded before use, Akash II met a similar fate soon after. It was with Akash III, made by UK-based company Datawind, that the first usable Akash tablet was launched. However, we soon caught wind that the new tab by Datawind was nothing but a rebranded Chinese product… A shame really.
Come 2013, we find out that Indian government still wants to out an Akash tablet, IV this time, and perhaps one that will actually penetrate the market and not leave distasteful impressions behind upon actually using the product. Proposed specifications for the tablet have been posted on the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) and the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) websites, with the aim that the tablet production commences as soon as the 12th of July. The government is yet to award the contract for building the tablet to any company.
Akash IV proposed specifications:
- 1 GB DDR3 RAM
- 4 GB Storage, 32 GB SD Card Support
- Lighter than 500 grams
- Thinner than 0.75-inch
- 5 Hours Web Browsing, 3 Hours 720p Video Playback
- Latest “stable” Android OS, dual-boot (Ubuntu)
- HTML5 Supported Browser
- Default language: English (Support for Hindi, Tamil, Punjabi, etc.)
The proposed tablet, Akash IV, will be launched for an ultra cheap INR 1130, or just about $25. Even with such an attractive price, past experience says that you’re better off spending your $25 elsewhere. Let’s hope we don’t see yet another encore performance with the new tablet.