India's US$35 Touchscreen Tablet Fiasco

Asia Sentinel, 4 Apr 2013
It was a project of great national pride - to beat the rest of the world to an affordable touchscreen tablet for online education delivery. Touted in 2009 by Kapil Sibal, then Minister of Human Resource Development as India's low-cost US$35 tablet breakthrough for students, the Aakash made headlines around the world.
The Aakash is now making headlines for failure.
DataWind, the company that pitched the idea to Kapil, received 1.4 million prepaid orders by February 2012. But instead of delivering promptly, DataWind offered 'rebates' for its higher-priced US$77 and US$96 UbiSlate 7 models, angering consumers who refused to take the up-sell bait. Many who did receive their US$35 Aakash found its screen awkward, its battery life too short and with annoying glitches. Many more were left angry with neither tablet nor cash. Full story