Another spoiler for Aakash enthusiasts! While unlike the resistive touchscreen on its predecessor, the Aakash 2 will sport a capacitive one, enthusiasts will also have to brace themselves for an enhanced price tag, confirms an Indian Express report. According to the report, enjoying a better, upgraded Aakash tablet will now come at a higher price, than the earlier promised $35 price tag. Quoting one of the officials on the matter, the report states that, “It has been decided that we can go up to $50 for Aakash 2, which will come with a capacitive screen besides a faster processor and other features. However, under no circumstances will we go beyond $50.

Trying to merge education and IT

To get better, but costlier! 

The report further adds that the HRD ministry, who've been regarded as the force behind the Aakash dream will now invite bids for 5 million units of the Aakash tablet, while the Aakash 2 project will be handled majorly by the Department of Information Technology. Reportedly, “A committee headed by Secretary, IT, R Chandrashekhar and with IIT directors and other stakeholders on board has already started working to take the Aakash 2 forward.

Interestingly, the makers of the initial version of the Aakash 2 tablet, Datawind had offered to the government – a better version of the Aakash tablet, still priced at $35. However, it does seem like the proposal didn't get through, and the government instead chose to price it at $50. Quoting Datawind CEO, Suneet Singh Tuli, the report stated, “We’ve made a proposal to the ministry to provide upgraded specifications at the same price as the current product.The ministry and the GOI (government of India) have a commendable vision, and have acted throughout this process in an honourable manner. The motivation by IIT-Jodhpur to impose military specification a year after the tender closed is not for us to comment on.

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