India Makes World’s Cheapest Laptop, Sakshat, based on Open Source Linux Operating System

On 22 July, 2010, India added a new feather to its list of innovations by launching the world’s cheapest laptop, named Sakshat (meaning something real), that will cost around Rs 1500. Kapil Sibal, Human Resource Development Minister of India, unveiled the device, made mainly for student living in rural areas. The device comes with 2GB on-board memory, comprises wireless connectivity, and wired connectivity through Ethernet ports. The device also includes USB ports for interfacing with other external devices. However, due to its low price tag, the laptop does not have a screen, and an external screen has to be connected via USB ports for viewing.  Linux, being open source and available free, is the choice of operating system on the laptop. The choice of Linux also enables the laptop users to use a wide range of other open sources softwares available in the world. This is extremely attracting for students from rural areas with money constraints, and who can not afford to pay for proprietary softwares. In addition, the laptop has solar-powered capability and consumes low power further saving the cost. The laptop can be used for several other interesting applications, such as audio video conference, data editing, and surfing the Internet. The laptop dimensions are 10 inch in length and 5 inch in width. Although, Sakshat does not have as many as features as the previous cheapest laptop by OLPC (One Laptop Per Child) organization,  it seems to be cheapest in terms of money while providing minimal needed features.

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