The cheapest tablet: only $35
Behold the cheapest gadget in the world, the Aakash tablet. It costs only $35 and it is sure to turn into this year’s revelation in India as far as cheap goes. Students and people with low incomes who crave such a device will finally be able to make their dreams come true. The Indian government gave a decree stating that students will have priority for this tablet over anyone else. But should they indeed flock to buy this product? Because a gadget that costs little isn’t necessarily a gadget with the best performance ever. We tested it especially for our readers from India and reached this review conclusion.
7 inch LCD display
At first there will be 100.000 Aakash tablets available for sale and it looks like they will be distributed to students directly at their place of study. The exterior of this device won’t leave a deep impression on the user, but what would you expect at this price? The 7″ LCD display with a total of 800 x 400 pixels is supposed to be resistive and respond to touch gestures in a jiffy; it didn’t do that, though, as our tests soon clarified: we had to exercise frequent pushing of the screen to make it spring to life. The display also makes this gadget the smallest around and image quality is pretty good, but don’t expect the best sharpness, contrast, brightness and colors, because you won’t get them. The fact that the Aakash tablet offers support for pen drives, unlike the iPad, comes as very good news for students in India. The gadget doesn’t include a keyboard in the price, but if you earn some extra money from a job or ask your parents, you can buy one and a cover made of leather, which will seem like you were using a mini laptop.
Android 2.2 Froyo
This Aakash is provided with an Android 2.2 Froyo operating system that doesn’t bring up any major issues and has a smooth navigation thanks to a 366 MHz + HD video co-processor. Since it’s cheap, this tablet did tend to annoy us with some lags. The UbiSurfer browser installed by Aakash for the students’ delight and their need to to research information for homework worked surprisingly well by accelerating the loading of Internet pages by a speed that was 10 to 30 faster than the norm. The 2 USB slots the tablet sports mean that students will be given the advantage of remaining in touch with flash and pen drives on the go. To make the device even more attractive to the young audience, manufacturers implemented the option of using it as a phone.
Some heating problems
If your docs are in the PDF, .docx, doc, PPT and others, don’t fret, the Aakash tablet offers support for them all, and also for image formats such as JPG, PNG, GIF and BMP and all the most important audio formats. The device battery ran for about 3 hours of life.
Students, before you buy your own Aakash tablet, be prepared to feel it get hot very fast (and lasting that way for a long time) and connect to the Internet only if you have access to Wi-Fi; otherwise you’re in danger of not being able to do your homework for the next day.
The Aakash tablet is a very cheap gadget with decent and sometimes downright good performance when we think about the browser and support for whatever format. But we’re of the opinion that students should receive only the best and this product isn’t that.
|Operating System type||Android 2.2 Froyo|
|RAM memory used||256MB RAM|
|Processor type||Arm11 at 366Mhz frequency|
|Battery specifications||2100 mAh|