UbiSlate 7Ci: £30 Datawind tablet is ‘world's cheapest’

The UbiSlate 7Ci is the commercial version of the low-cost educational tablet, the AAKASH-2

There may only be just over week left until Christmas, but the battle of the low-budget tablets is unrelenting.

Earlier this month, discount supermarket chain Aldi announced the £79 Lifetab, significantly undercutting the competition. Now, Aldi has been undercut itself, with UK-based electronics firm Datawind announcing the commercial version of the “world’s cheapest tablet”: the £30 UbiSlate 7Ci.

Originally called the AAKASH-2, the tablet was produced by Datawind for the Indian Government who intended to use it as a low-cost educational tool. But now the firm has decided to open it up to the commercial market.

As would be expected from a £30 tablet, the specs are rather underwhelming. The 800 x 480 pixel 7-inch screen – which is low resolution even by the budget tablet market’s standards – is accompanied by a 1GHz single-core processor and 512MB of RAM. The UbiSlate is also running the Android 4.0.3 (Ice Cream Sandwich) operating system and has 4GB of memory, which is expandable thanks to a Micro SD memory card slot.

There are other tablets in the UbiSlate range with more impressive specs and these are, inevitably, more expensive. But it should be remembered that the UbiSlate 7Ci isn’t trying to compete with high-cost tablets such as the iPad – rather, it’s trying cater for those who want a device that can provide the fundamental services of a tablet for an affordable price. And in that sense, it’s definitely an option.