New Delhi: Aakash tablet was launched in February 2012 with much fanfare, only to prove a big embarrassment to the government. The previous two versions of Aakash tablet – Aakash and Aakash 2 – failed students in many ways. They were very slow, their touch screen didn’t work properly, and their battery got discharged every few hours.

Hence, IIT Jodhpur lost the affordable home-grown tablet project to IIT Bombay. IIT Bombay developed Aakash 2.1 (third generation of the table) which had 1 GHz processor, 512 MB RAM, 4 GB storage and ran on Android 4.0. Its screen picked up scratches easily and it had extremely low resolution of 800X400 pixels. Taking the cautious approach, the tablet was not released to the public. Datawind, the company that produced the table sells it under the name of UbiSlate 7Ci for Rs 3,799.

Now, IIT Bombay is developing a new version of the tablet called Aakash 4 (fourth generation). It is lighter than previous versions, has a clearer display, and has a smoother video playback. It has USB ports to attach a keyboard and a mouse.  Aakash 4 has Linux installed on it and one can boot Ubuntu 12.10 on their tablet from an SD card without having to root their Android OS. The price of the tablet will stay close to $50 (about Rs 3,100).


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