The first Aakash tablet, a.k.a. Ubislate 7 was made by the Canadian company Datawind and Aakash 2 aka Ubislate 7+ too is being developed combining parts outside of the country but according to the Indian HRD Minister, Kapil Sibble, they plan to change that
“We are now going to diversify production base and indigenise Aakash tablet. We are planning to create eco-system for end to end development of Aakash in India. This will create enormous opportunities for R&D institutions, developers, electronic production houses,” he said at the event of Indian Semi-Conductor Association.
“Well, we want to make sure that it is 100 per cent done locally ultimately.” At present, several components including the processor are procured from outside”, he added.
The government in the plans to involve three more IITs for the project. IIT Rajasthan is the only IIT to be involved in the project, IIT Mumbai, IIT Madras and IIT Kanpur would also be roped in for the project, sources in the HRD Ministry said.
The diversification would result in Aakash tablet’s cost coming down to Rs 1,500. Sibal said the tablet costs Rs 2276 now (based on the order for one lakh units) and it would come down to Rs 1,500, including profit and transportation, when the (order) number goes up to 10 lakh.
Of this Rs 1,500, the government would give subsidy of Rs 750 to educational institutions, which would pay the remaining amount so that the low-cost device gets into the hands of students free-of-cost, he said.
The new Aakash 2 tablet will have improvements in the processor and battery. Do write to us in comments below if anyone has already ordered the tablet or are planning to do so.