HCL has finally launched its budget Android tablets in India. The two new tablets are named ME U1 and MyEdu tablet. Both these tablets will run on Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) right out of the box. Enough of cheap Gingerbread/Honeycomb based Chinese tablets.
The HCL ME U1 tablet is powered by a 1GHz processor, supported by 512MB RAM and 4GB of internal memory. Seems like HCL did an uncle Scrooge when it came to saving money on flash memory. 4GB on an Android tablet is like a pizza without cheese. Thankfully there's a memory card slot to solve the problem.
The tablet features a 7-inch display at a resolution of 800x480 pixels. It includes other standard features such as a front-facing camera, a USB port, a micro-USB port and a micro-SD card slot. The tablet is powered by a 3600 mAh battery. The hardware specifications for both the tablets are almost exactly the same.
Interestingly, the tablets have an HCL branded ME app store instead of the usual Android Market app, which is now called the Google Play Store. HCL has set the price tag of this tablet at Rs. 7,999, claiming that it would compete with the Aakash tablet.
Meanwhile the MyEdu tablet is targeted towards students. It comes in two variants and includes a bunch of educational content for students. The K12 version, priced at Rs. 11,499, comes with a lot of educational apps such as games, videos and e-books. The second variant is priced at Rs. 9,999 and it includes higher education based content.
HCL has expressed their desire to bid for the next edition of the world's most cheapest tablet Aakash. The Aakash tablet will be provided at a subsidized price by the government and is mainly targeted at educational purposes.
HCL's Ice Cream Sandwich based tablets are slightly more powerful than the entry level Aakash tablets. Only time will tell which ones make it to the students' backpacks.