Aakash tablet: the digital slate, Can this revolutionize India’s education system?

Aakash tablet is the much anticipated Android tablet PC that has been designed by a joint collaboration of Indian Institute of technology and Data Wind, a London based organization. The development part has been taken care of by Quad, an India based company, at their Hyderabad production center. This cheapest Indian tablet PC is being manufactured on a trial run with 100,000 units. Officially this android tablet was announced India, on October 5th 2011 in New Delhi and it was called Aakash or Ubislate. However   a second generation commercial model of this Tablet Pc has been developed with significantly upgraded features and this new model is being called UbiSlate 7+. The second generation is due production in early 2012.

Aakash tablet Specifications: This android tablet (Aakash) is equipped with ARM 11 microprocessor and 256 MB RAM, has 2 GB Internal Flash Memory and up to 32 GB expandable external memory. The operating system is Android 2.2. The tablet comes with a sleek 7 inches touch screen and 1 USB port. The device comes loaded with several features and many more will be available soon as the dedicated Apps store for the same is launched. Plenty of education contents will be available on Aakash which has been developed by the Sakshat portal. The tablet can view and play wide variety of contents, videos, music and more.  Average battery backup is 180 minutes depending on usage.  It has both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity but 3G and 4G are not enabled on Aakash.

Supported document formats on this tablet are DOC, DOCX, XLS, XLSXODP, ODT, PPT and PPTX. The default document viewer is PDF and supported image formats are JPG, PNG, GIF and BMP. Audio formats supported: MP3, AC3, AAC, WMA and WAV. Apart from the xHTML default browser, there is an additional UbiSurfer Browser available in this.

Facts about Aakash Tablet: About 10,000 units of this PC have been already disbursed by the Indian government since its launch. Though the project was beset by a number of setbacks and delays, it is finally realty now. The sole aim behind launching Aakash was to link all 400 universities and more than 25000 colleges across the country. Initially this cheap tablet PC in India was promoted as the ‘$35 computer’. However the commercial model of Aakash has emerged to be slightly pricier with a cost of $60. Still it remains to be a revolutionary attempt from the end of government of India.

Will it help in Revolutionize Indian Education System? :

Indian education system in very traditional and books are the major source of getting knowledge. Computer is considered as one of the most efficient and useful device when it comes to facilitating education to students from all social and economical strata of Indian subcontinent so is Internet. With the use of internet and computer knowledge can be digitalize and student can have access to unlimited notes and study material at very less cost. This can also help in learning new things, improving creativity and knowing about career options. This will also help in reducing gap between poor and rich children and rural and urban students.

But with the expensive tag attached with PCs and tablets, access to it was restricted among learners from higher financial backgrounds.  Aakash may bring in a dramatic change to the entire scenario. Now students from all social classes can think about owing a PC of their own! Aakash is priced at $35 which is as low as 2000 INR and it will certainly create major positive changes to the Indian educational system.

On the event of launching Aakash, 500 units were distributed among children and it is certainly one of the best steps the Government could have taken for the betterment of educational system and its popularity among all social classes. Now even the offspring of maid servants and 4th grade staffs can imagine buying a knowledge device like Aakash tablet for themselves and that too by saving their pocket money. It has significantly reduced taxation from the shoulders of fiscally challenged Indian parents. Indeed the endeavor will come out as a great success in terms of better education and more highly qualified students. Also if our new generation will be internet savvy then they can better know about their rights, be updated about what’s happening around, and help in removing issues like corruption, since distribution of things can only be made by Govt. online if people would be computer savvy.

Conclusion: Before making any conclusions it must also be looked into the quality of device. Although it is cheap in price but has some lacking in quality as well, like resistive touch screen, low battery and less powerful processor which might not be very good experience while accessing internet, which is the main factor in digitizing education system.Govt. is planning  to resolve these issues with new version of Aakash which is 3times faster than old version and has 50% more battery life, and this will be available to students at old cost. Hopefully it be the one we are waiting for so long called “common man’s PC” and can change the way our education system works in positive way.

  • chandu

    nice information