India’s $35 tablet to be launched early next year

India’s $35 tablet to be launched early next yearThe $35 tablet computer announced by the Indian government is set for an official launch early next year.

The contract to manufacture the affordable touch screen device named Sakshat has been given to HC LTechnologies. The IT services firm will deliver the device, which is meant for students in the country, by January 10, 2011.

The government has placed an order for 100,000 units in the first phase with the company. HCL has experience is producing low cost devices as it created world's cheapest Windows laptop, the Classmate PC, back in 2008.

The union minister for Human Resource Development, Kapil Sibal had showcased the affordable touch screen device in New Delhi as part of the government efforts to provide high-quality education to the students in the country.

The tablet computer will support web browsing, video conferencing and word processing, according to its developers. The tablet is based on Linux-based computer and has 2GB of RAM and USB ports but it does not have a hard disk.

The tablet could be available for school children and University students as soon as next year. The students from the various branches of the Indian Institute of Technology have designed the motherboard. The ministry expects that the price of the device will drop to $20 and then to $10.

Mr. Sibal expressed that about over one-third of the 25,000 colleges and universities across the country are now connected to the broadband connection and various online and video-streaming courses are now available for students with many more are being developed.

The Indian Institute of Technology in Rajasthan is expected to test the device in intensive laboratory and field tests across the country. After eth testing, the government will acquire one million units and distribute them to the students across the country. The government has set aside $6.5 million for this project.