“It’s such an honor to be recognized by Forbes. They have recognized the revolution that is being created by breaking the price barrier of computing and internet devices. The Aakashtablet computers will help improving the quality of the Indian education system and the world, by bridging the digital divide. We will continue with our efforts to provide affordability to the billions that have been left out of the internet age.” Suneet Singh Tuli
A Few years back the world was talking about a Sub 1000$ PC, we started talking of the Sub 500$ Notebooks, and there were a few people working on things, that were still beyond our thinking, from the OLPC Project, to our Sardar ji’ friend who was making cool devices such as the DataWind Pocket Surfer, though I did manage to spot one OLPC in a Foss Conference a few years back, the Pocket Surfer from Data Wind was easily available out of a Dealer in Okhla, though launched quite late. Then last year there was this big announcement, Data Wind and the Government had tied up to do a 35$ Tablet, Questions about Subsidy, why this Tablet, why not the iPad if there is Subsidy all came up, and the Whole Project around Akash got a bad name, though Tablets did manage to reach a few people, and I also managed to get my hands on the first unit, I was myself unhappy about it, I do not know the math or the login on what was happening, but what I saw, I did like it, though it was made pretty cheaply, but it was made for a population who can never think of the iPad, or the modern day Phones and Tablets that we all use.
In January of 2012, Tuli gave an Interview, which disclosed the Secret behind the 35$ Tablet, he mentioned that they had received an Order of 400,000 tablets on the day of it’s launch, the traffic was so high that their websites crashed, and the Government was to order approximately 2 million units and subsidise them, the issue was taken up by geeks, tech journalists, and business journalists and every one had their point of view.
A Few days, back some friends got their hands on the current version of the Akash Tablet, the Ubi Slate, and have had favourable reviews, the New Version starts at Rs. 3499 and I am waiting for a review unit to come across to look at it, In a House where there are many a Devices, I know that people who work for us would want to get one for their kids too, after all don’t they want to play Angry Birds, Watch you tube videos, or connect to the Internet, the Sub 100$ Market is here, and Tuli has made a change.
So When I read this news late last night, that Tuli has been featured in the Forbes Impact 15 list, that show cases top 15 CEOs who’s disruptive technologies will shape tomorrow’s world… I was really happy to read it, though with the same news I also got a press release on how Tuli was honoured with the Entrepreneur of the Year Award by the Sikh Directory, I truly believe that he is making a difference, and as Gary Fisher, the Father of Mountain Biking told me the other day in a one on one, IF the world does not call you crazy, You are just not doing it right.
The Others on this list are great personalities, some we have heard of, some we have not, but I am really glad that Tuli is on this list, I wish him all the best, and look forward to what he has up his sleeve.
Here is an Old Interview of his from the Days of the Pocket Surfer, that I found on Youtube.. Enjoy
What is Interesting with this announcement is that, Tomorrow i.e Sunday, November 11, 2012 we will also see the launch of the Akash2 Tablet at Vigyan Bhawan in Delhi