Bangladesh launches $130 laptop for schools

Oct 11, 2011
Bangladeshi school girls are seen at a school in Dhaka, July 2011. Bangladesh on Tuesday unveiled a $130 locally made laptop that it hopes will help bridge the digital divide in the impoverished South Asian country.

Bangladesh on Tuesday unveiled a $130 locally made laptop that it hopes will help bridge the digital divide in the impoverished South Asian country.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina unveiled the Doel -- or magpie -- laptops at a ceremony in the capital Dhaka, saying the computer, made by state-owned TSS, would help Bangladesh become a middle-income nation by 2021.

"(There are) four types of Doel laptops, the most basic one is priced at 10,000 taka ($130). The highest price is 26,000 taka," said government spokesman Shefayet Hossain.

Hossain said the idea of the cut-price laptops came from the education ministry, which aims to distribute them to tens of millions of poor students.

TSS has struck joint venture deals with two to produce and market the laptops across the country, he added.

The Doel is Bangladesh's national bird.

Despite a booming economy, which has grown at an average six percent each year over the last decade, Bangladesh ranks low on Internet and information technology penetration.

The government has said it hopes that the inexpensive will aid in closing the digital gap in the country.

Digital inclusion has the potential to bring education to people in countries where educational infrastructure is limited, experts say.

Access to the Internet is also seen as a way to bolster health care, banking and other services and help lift millions of Bangladeshis out of poverty.

Last week, neighbouring India launched what has been dubbed the world's cheapest computer -- a $46 tablet device. The government is planning to buy 100,000 of the tablets to be given away for free to students.

Explore further: FINsix small-size laptop adapter uses special power platform

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

India launches 'world's cheapest' tablet computer

Oct 05, 2011

India on Wednesday launched its long-awaited "computer for the masses", unveiling a $46 tablet device designed to bring the information technology revolution to tens of millions of students.

Mobile phone English lessons a hit in Bangladesh

Dec 14, 2009

Every morning, Ahmed Shariar Sarwar makes it his daily ritual to call number 3000 on his mobile phone to get lessons in English -- his passport to a better life in impoverished Bangladesh.

Indian state in great laptop giveaway

Sep 15, 2011

The southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu on Thursday began a $2 billion giveaway of free laptops to every student in state-run schools and colleges over the next five years.

India to launch $45 tablet computer

Oct 04, 2011

India is set Wednesday to launch its long-awaited low-cost computer, a $45 tablet device designed to bring the information technology revolution to tens of millions of students.

Recommended for you

Study: Samsung phone durable, but iPhone has edge

Apr 14, 2014

Samsung's new Galaxy S5 smartphone is more durable than last year's model and other leading Android phones, but the iPhone 5s outperformed all of them in part because of its smaller size, a new study finds.

Invention loves collaboration at Milan show

Apr 14, 2014

Collaboration drove invention during Milan's annual International Furniture Show and collateral design week events, yielding the promise of homes without mobile phone chargers, and with more ergonomic seating, ...

Amazon 'to release smartphone later this year'

Apr 12, 2014

Amazon is preparing to release a smartphone in the second half of 2014, thrusting itself into a market already crowded with Apple and Samsung models, The Wall Street Journal reported.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

rwinners
not rated yet Oct 11, 2011
A picture would have been informative.

More news stories

Quantenna promises 10-gigabit Wi-Fi by next year

(Phys.org) —Quantenna Communications has announced that it has plans for releasing a chipset that will be capable of delivering 10Gbps WiFi to/from routers, bridges and computers by sometime next year. ...

Unlocking secrets of new solar material

(Phys.org) —A new solar material that has the same crystal structure as a mineral first found in the Ural Mountains in 1839 is shooting up the efficiency charts faster than almost anything researchers have ...

Floating nuclear plants could ride out tsunamis

When an earthquake and tsunami struck the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant complex in 2011, neither the quake nor the inundation caused the ensuing contamination. Rather, it was the aftereffects—specifically, ...

New US-Spanish firm says targets rich mobile ad market

Spanish telecoms firm Telefonica and US investment giant Blackstone launched a mobile telephone advertising venture on Wednesday, challenging internet giants such as Google and Facebook in a multi-billion-dollar ...

Progress in the fight against quantum dissipation

(Phys.org) —Scientists at Yale have confirmed a 50-year-old, previously untested theoretical prediction in physics and improved the energy storage time of a quantum switch by several orders of magnitude. ...