Cloud-based education company AcrossWorld Education has partnered with Delhi-based Go-Tech, which is the sister concern of the electrical and electronics solutions company, Gourav Roshni Limited, to launch a low cost Android tablet called ATab for the education segment.
Device Specs and features: The tablet is essentially a 7” tablet running on an unknown version of Android and is powered by a 1.1 GHz processor and 512MB RAM. It has a 2GB inbuilt memory which can later be expanded to 16 GB, and features support for Wi-Fi and an external 3G USB Dongle. Users will also get three years free access to AcrossWorld’s Education Bridge platform.
Availability: Priced at Rs 5000, the tablet is expected to be hit the markets in the second week of March. The company said that it will be initially sourcing 10,000 tablets to the country and scaling the process in the forthcoming future. So we are assuming that the company will be initially judging the traction generated by these tablets and sourcing more tablets based on the response.
EducationBridge Platform: AcrossWorld Education develops a proprietary cloud-based platform called EducationBridge that allows students and teachers from K-12 schools, colleges and universities across the world, access to open resources including open content, open educational resources, and legacy content. It also allows teachers to customize the content and upload to the platform to share their own legacy content with their students. Other platform features include the ability to bookmark, rate, recommend, and comment on open educational content. The company also offers professional services for deployment, and training for schools and colleges who intend to use EducationBridge.
Tie-Ups: AcrossWorld Education announced that it has tied up with various schools and universities like Carmel Public School, Gaujrala; Dr. Ambedkar Memorial Institute of Technology, Rourkela; Shikhar Shishu Sadan Convent School, Dhampur; and, Gandhinagar Public School, Moradabad with a dozen schools and colleges from cities like Delhi, Kanpur, Allahabad, Rourkela and Gaujarala indicating interest in the ATab. The company claimed that it has more than 5,000 users in India.
Other Tablets: ATab will be competing with Aakash Tablet which was designed, developed and manufactured by DataWind in collaboration with IIT Rajasthan, under the HRD Ministry’s National Mission on Education through Information & Communication Technology (NME-ICT). Although we are not quite sure whats the current status of the Aakash tablet project. The last we heard was that the Indian Government was booting out Datawind from the project and creating the tablet indigenously with help from Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), Department of Information Technology, IITs including IIT Kanpur, IIT Mumbai, IIT Chennai and IIT Jodhpur, and a few public sector units. Datawind however dismissed these reports as a rumor and stated that they will continue to distribute the tablet and future enhancements as per the current order.
In September 2011, Geodesic, the digital messaging and content solutions provider had also announced its intentions to launch a education device which, according to the company, will have two-screens – an E-Ink screen and a multi-touch capable screen. This device will allow students to download textbooks and reference books, access the Internet, connect to a college or school’s online education system and use it during classroom teaching for taking notes or recording classroom lectures. It will come in two different variants, a Linux based one for parental control, meant for smaller kids, and an Android based one for access to Android apps.
Other tablets include iProf’s education tablet which runs on Android OS with a iProf’s Learning Management System pre-loaded on it.