Coming soon, $30-40 I-slate tablets for school students

Our Bureau Hyderabad | Updated on November 14, 2017 Published on March 19, 2012

Mr Henrik Anderson, a Swedish designer of 'I-slate' explains a teacher the usage. — Photo: P.V. Sivakumar   -  Business Line

If proposals of Nanyang Technological University (NTU) of Singapore and Villages

If proposals of Nanyang Technological University (NTU) of Singapore and Villages for Development and Learning Foundation (ViDAL) go as planned, school children in one of the poorest districts in India would get 50,000 tablets in the next three years.

When bought in bulk, these tablets will be available for just $30-40 from vendors, while NTU and ViDAL would take care of the content that goes into these tablets, labelled I-slate.

These entities in association with Rice University (Singapore) and the Andhra Pradesh Government have already been doing a pilot in two Government schools in Mahaboobnagar district by giving school children 30 tablets. “We have been studying the user experience for the last three years. We will be coming out with a detailed paper,” Mr Krishna Palem, a professor at both Rice and NTU, and who created the I-slate.

I-slate is a low-cost learning tool designed for classrooms with no electricity and too few teachers. It is under joint development by the I-slate consortium that includes hardware experts at Rice and NTU, ViDAL and a US-based design team.

“I-slate is a device designed for a single purpose – education in a low-resource environment. We have talked to manufacturers in China and they agreed to supply these units at $30-40 a piece, if you buy lakh units. The price would gradually go up as the number goes down,” Mr Krishna Palem, who was here to showcase the model, told Business Line.

Ms Rajeswari Pingali, ViDAL Chairperson, said the learning curve had moved up in the user group after they started using the device. Each year, the consortium partners would take the slates back and study and analyse the usage patterns in order to get insights.

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Published on March 19, 2012
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