In last few days, there were a lot of development about strategy of Aakash Tablet.
- DataWind is Out – There were news of tussle between Aakash Tablet manufacturer Datawind and Aakash Tablet designer IIT Rajasthan on specification of the tablet. Government was also not pleased with Datawind’s decision to sell the tablet in open market before fulfilling the first order by government for 1,00,000 tablets. Datawind had delivered 10,000 tablet to the government in first batch. In earlier story Datawind agreed to enhance processor and battery life for no additional cost. However, IIT Rajshthan wanted the enhanced specs for Aakash Tablet as rugged tablet which can withstand water and impact. Datawind come up with a price tag of around 100 dollars (USD) for rugged tablet. Now, as per latest announcement by Kapil Sibal, DataWind is no more associated with the project. We don’t know if DataWind can continue selling the tablet and their own enhanced version Ubislate in open market or not. From, DataWind site it seems they are still pre-booking the Ubislate+.
- C-DAC and ITI are new owners of Aakash Tablet – Government has decided to rope C-DAC (Centre for Development of Advanced Computing) and state owned telecom equipment manufacturer Indian Telephone Industries (ITI) to further development of Aakash Tablet. They are given task to produce a better tablet at same announced price. As you know Aakash Tablet’s cost was close to 50 $(2250 rupees) and it was available from 1300 rupees onwards after subsidy.
- Specification of Enhanced Tablet – No specification is yet published, other than the fact, that this would be Aakash-II with better specification.
- More Confusion – Earlier there were a news that Datawind would produce enhanced version of Tablet, and it would be known as Aakash-II, but with this announcement, there may be confusion in market. If someone is talking about Aakash-II, would it be Aakash-II by Datawind or Aakash-II by ITI and CDAC. Its also possible that Datawind may not use the name Aakash with their product anymore. DataWind has said they haven’t got any communication from government about decision to take away Aakash from Datawind.
- What should we do? - We should wait for C-DAC and ITI version of Aakash II, which may come sometime in 2012, as per government announcement. However, if you can’t wait, You may choose Datawind’s Ubislate+ which will be enhanced Aakash Tablet with GPRS support.
So, what are you planning? Keep visiting the site for more updates!