Updated 19 May, 2013, 5:16 pm IST
India to showcase upgraded Aakash at UN on November 28
| by Anuradha Shetty |
India’s improved attempt at low-cost computing is on its way to the United Nations (UN), as the nation is scheduled to showcase its innovation behind developing the “most competitively priced” tablet computer. “India, which assumed this month’s rotating Presidency of the Security Council, will showcase its low-cost Aakash tablet at the United Nations, highlighting the country’s innovation involved in the “most competitively priced” tablet computer,” states a report by The Hindu. Hardeep Singh Puri, India's Permanent Representative to the UN has said that Aakash will be showcased on November 28 at the UN headquarters. It has also been known that the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has been invited to the event. Also present would be Suneet Singh Tuli, the CEO of Datawind, which manufactures Aakash under the commercial name Ubislate.
At a news conference to outline the monthly agenda Puri referred to the Aakash tablet as the most competitively priced tablet computer by an entrepreneur of Indian origin, and added that in UN terminology it would be referred to as "frugal innovation". "Later talking to PTI, Mr. Puri said the Indian mission to the UN took the initiative to showcase the tablet at the world body and other UN member states as well as media persons will be invited to the event," added the report further.
Will be showcased at the U.N.
The nation’s Communications and IT Minister, Kapil Sibal had recently sent out several units of the upgraded version of the Aakash tablet to several union ministers. The Union Ministers, as per earlier reports seemed to be very pleased with the upgraded version of the Aakash tablet and showered it with positive feedback. On November 11, i.e., on Education Day this year, the tablets will be officially launched in the country, by President Pranab Mukherjee. With this, enthusiasts and potential buyers finally have a date to go by for the launch of the upgraded version of the low-cost computing device. Even as scores of students in the nation awaited the launch and availability of the Aakash 2 tablet, several units were sent across to all ministers as well as state chief ministers for their feedback, recently. Now armed with positive feedback, the Aakash 2 finally seems to be raring to go.
The Aakash 2 is a significant upgrade over the original Aakash tablet. The initial version of the tablet had a 7-inch resistive touchscreen, which struggled to respond to touch. It ran Android v2.2 on a 366MHz processor, based on an older ARM architecture. The Aakash 2 tablet is likely to be replaced by a successor, which will have a dual-core Cortex - A9 processor by the end of this year.
Early last month, reports had emerged about Modi taking a dig at India’s low-cost dream tablet - the brainchild of the Communications and IT Minister, Kapil Sibal. It all happened when, as part of its campaigning ahead of the Assembly elections, Congress announced that it would distribute free laptops to students if they were voted to power. Critical of this, Modi took a dig at Congress and said, "Kash [If only] this Aakash tablet could land on earth, then the lie [promise of free laptops] they [Congress] are spreading now would hold some weight". Modi went on to accuse the Centre of 'dragging its feet' in distributing Aakash tablets. Modi asserted that the Centre failed to deliver on its much-hyped commitment.
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