India's human resource development minister Kapil Sibal unveiled the world's cheapest "laptop" last week. The touch-screen computing device, designed for students, costs a mere $35. Sibal and his team aim to eventually lower the price to $10.
He said the device comes with several standard features—internet browsers, wi-fi, a PDF reader, and video conferencing capabilities—but its hardware was created with sufficient flexibility to incorporate new components according to user requirement.
The device was developed by research teams at India's premier technological institutes, the Indian Institute of Technology and the Indian Institute of Science.
India spends approximately 3% of its annual budget on school education and has improved its literacy rates to over 64% of its 1.2 billion population. However, studies have shown many students have difficulty reading or writing, and most state-run schools have inadequate facilities.