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Science  31 May 2013:
Vol. 340, Issue 6136, pp. 1032-1036
DOI: 10.1126/science.340.6136.1032

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India has made strides in extending education to all strata of society. But India is still failing according to Ashok Jhunjhunwala, an electrical engineer at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras. He believes that an inexpensive tablet, purchased en masse by the government and distributed to students, would be a powerful teaching aid. As Science went to press, a dozen companies were racing to refine prototypes of a $50 tablet. Based on the benchmarking outcome, the Indian government is considering making an initial purchase this fall of 5 million tablets from the five top-performing manufacturers under the name "Aakash 4." The tablet is at the vanguard of India's drive to use science and technology to raise millions of people out of poverty. The aim is to bypass hidebound approaches and link talent and ideas in a push for rapid economic growth.