Cheap Android Tablets – Got one at R999.00

I was so exited when India announce their long awaited $35 android tablet; akaash they call it –a hindi phrase meaning sky. I have since been keenly following the Aakash story [1, 2] and also started digging for information to try and find out how datawind managed to lower their unit cost of production to a shocking $45 (the indian Indian government has formulated a grand plan to then subsidize it to $35 to indian university students). I immediately wrote to datawind [3] to find out if it would be possible for them to ship a prototype to me, but was told to wait till end of December, 2011… I wasn’t going to wait that long and so I got one of my baby cousins a replica of Aakash at $120 (R 999.00) from tabletworld [4] — they actually shipped it to me yesterday. For the amount of money I paid, its nothing less than amazing!

Now the Ultra Low Cost Tablet (ULCT) I got is nowhere near the likes of Amazon’s Kindle Fire, Apple’s iPad, Samsung Galaxy Tab or Sony’s Tablet S, but for an entry level-tablet, the ColPad –thats what the guys from tabletworld call it– is relatively okay 😉 I have been playing around with it since yesterday afternoon and its pretty sleek. It runs on Android 2.2.1, has a 2 Mega pix camera, can be hooked up to the Internet via Wi-Fi or a 3G USB modem and comes bundled with a slew of really cool apps (Facebook, Twitter, Shelves, Dropbox, Jango, e.t.c.) –with the Android Market though, this arsenal of apps could further be increased. A comprehensive list of technical specifications and features for the ColPad is here [5]

There is a revolution going one… access to information is no longer a privillege enjoyed by the elite in society –the coming of Aakash and ColPad is a taste of good things to come. I long for a time when the majority of my African brothers and sisters will be presented with opportunities that the wealthy in society currently enjoy, and can only hope that it will be during my lifetime.

PS: Its a Chinese made product and yes I know the hype around products originating from China :p

[1] https://twitter.com/#!/lightonphiri/status/121867949748387840
[2] https://twitter.com/#!/lightonphiri/status/121865886364737536
[3] http://datawind.com/
[4] http://www.tabletworld.co.za/
[5] https://s3.amazonaws.com/tabletworld/SpecSheetColpad.pdf

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  • Bluedevil678

    I got one recently too however the almost none existent battery life was a killer for me 

    • @ff218d3ed34fbb1b473ae1a38001ce42:disqus I know exactly what you mean… I have to constantly charge it as well. Nonetheless, for the amount of money I paid for it, its a good buy. I love the fact that I can pretty much be connected without moving around with my laptop –I have a very rudimentary mobile station (a Nokia 1280). Now I can sync my work with Dropbox, I can tweet& I can access Facebook on the goal.

      Its a start and its only time before such tools become cheaper.

      • Hi there … maybe you can assist as I haven’t heard back from Tablet world … I really want to buy this Colpad but would first like to know if you can download Zinio to it to download and read magazines. I did try Google and I did notice that they’ve recently released Zinio for Android 2.2 but I’d prefer to know if it definitely does as this would be a gift for my mom, including a few magazine subscriptions 😉
        Hoping you can assist!

        P.S. If this helps https://market.android.com/details?id=com.zinio.mobile.android.reader&feature=search_result

        • @facebook-670975900:disqus I’ll try and install it the moment I get home. In theory though, it should be possible. I’ve pretty much been able to install virtually any application that has interested me on android market.
          Will probably get back to you around 7pm today. Hope this helps.

        • @facebook-670975900:disqus Unfortunately, its not compatible. Very strange, especially that the gadget runs on Android 2.2.1. I am sure the guys from Tablet World should have a hack/workaround –you might want to get in touch with them.

          • You’re a star! Thank you sir 🙂 … that does help because I’d hate to give it to my tech-challenged mom only for her to get upset and never use it. Will pass this on to the guys at Tablet World and see what they suggest!
            Thanks again!

  • Riaan

    Hi Bianca.

    Zinio

    Zinio is not available in the Android Market when you are
    accessing it from the Colpad. This could indicate that the Colpad does not meet
    all the criteria to run the application.

    We found a copy of the application and managed to install
    it. You can login, download a magazine and see the index. The problem at the
    moment is that the page does not actually display on the device. We have
    reported this to Zinio and will provide an update as soon as we get feedback.

    Battery

    I am not sure about your specific experience and
    expectations. You can try to install the power widget to easily control some
    settings to optimize your battery life.  You
    can try some of the following to see if it will help in your case. 1) Adjust
    the brightness of the screen, 2) Switch of wireless connections if not required
    and 3) Kill background task and apps that are not required.

  • Bought the Dynapad … waiting in anticipation 😉

    • @facebook-670975900:disqus Good for you; does that mean Zinio can be installed on the Dynapad? I am sure you’ll get it in no time. I got my package within 24 hours after they confirmed receiving the money –those guys are efficient.

  • In depth review, though i knew half of it before. I adore the Archos line of Android internet tablets. It is fast, light and easy to use.

    • Well, cost for was a major factor for me. I basically wanted to buy something that was affordable and robust –I found that the ColPad fit my basic needs.

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  • Lots of add ons are obtainable to raise the performance of the tablet in the event you use it as a lovely entertainment gadget.

  • Its just incredible. Hard to believe that a tablet can sell at this price. It would be interesting to research on it. But thanks for very best information sharing about it.

  • It is pretty interesting story about Aakash tablet. The current era is such a revolutionary time for tablet industry. Well, I am in favor of easy-to-use tablet devices, rather than cheap tablets.

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  • Thanks for a great information sharing here, I have to say that This is an outstanding story of Akash tablet. So I prefer the easy to use tablet devices, rather than cheap tablets.

    • I agree with you entirely, but there are times when financial constraints force you to settle for cheaper alternatives 😉

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