We are now halfway through of what is called the Year of the tablet PC and have already seen some pretty interesting devices that have been launched to battle the iPad. Even though many have tried and failed at launching a truly successful iPad killer, we don’t expect new products to stop appearing any time soon.
And as we have time and again said, the Android operating system is empowering companies to bring out their own version of what they feel is a device that can challenge Apple when it comes to smartphones and tablet devices. We have already seen Indian phone manufacturers hop onto the Android bandwagon, with Micromax, Spice and Olive making home-grown Android powered phones and now its time to shift their attention to the hugely untapped tablet market in India.
Bangalore based EAFT Technologies has finally launched their Android powered tablet, I say finally because you might not remember but this was one of the devices showcased last year in India. Although the specifications of the tablet have been changed since it was initially showcased, the device still ships with Android 2.2 (which is not tablet optimized). The device showcased last year was called ‘Magictile’ but the company probably wants to highlight that this is a new device and is calling it the ‘Magictile Marathon’ Here’s a look at some of the features:
- 10.1 inch LCD capacitive multi-touch screen.
- Nvidia Tegra 2 processor @1GHz and 512MB RAM.
- WiFi b/g , 3G ( data only)
- Ships with Android 2.2 Froyo ( no word on further software upgrades yet)
- EAFT AppStore ( No Android Market?)
- 1 USB 2.0 port, HDMI out, docking port
- HD video playback
- 1.3 MP front facing camera
So here’s what we think looking at the specs, the hardware looks solid but where’s the software? Still running Android 2.2 when other tablets are running Android 3.1 honeycomb? And why is there no Android Market?
Well these are sure disappointments but its not all bad. The hardware can surely support newer versions of Android but can you count on a start-up to deliver timely software updates when giants like Samsung take forever to roll them out. All in all it looks like a solid built tablet that was cheated on its software side. Priced at 29k its slightly steep for buying a brand new tablet whose software is already outdated.
This will not be the first time that an Indian company has tried to launch a tablet PC and it will not be the last. You may remember NotionInk that launched their Adam tablet PC running Android last year and has received mixed reviews. Olive telecom too tried its hand at making one, the OlivePad. News is that other Indian phone manufacturers are soon to follow in the footsteps of these first movers, these new entrants may include Micromax, Lava and Zen. Looking at how much scope there is in India for well priced devices, we should see an onslaught of Android tablets from Indian companies.
Would you buy a tablet manufactured by an Indian company if its well priced?Do you ‘trust’ Indian manufacturers to built high-quality tablets (and not just bring cheaper imported tablets?).