Tablets for emerging markets seem to be all the rage. India started the trend with its Akash tablet, and now the Republic of Congo has its own cost cutting, touchscreen device: the Way-C — a Chinese made, US$300 tablet.
The inventor of the Way-C (meaning “the light of the stars”), Verone Mankou says: “We have set up a team and logistics to sell the tablet since Friday. Today, anyone can buy one.” Customers in the main cities of Congo, such as Brazzaville and Pointe-Noire, can now purchase the ultra-cheap tablet.
Mankou claims that, “In technological terms, this tablet is equivalent to all those to be found on the market.” With a 1.2Ghz CPU, an Android OS, 512MB of memory and 4GB of internal memory, the Way-C can’t compete specs-wise with the dual-core, 64GB monster from Apple. Then again, it doesn’t have to. All it has to do is to grab a foothold on the sparse Congolese tablet market.
Further specs include a 7-inch screen and a version of Android dubbed “Kongo” (based on Gingerbread 2.3.5). Mankou’s aim is to keep the tablet accessible for the African market and says that although the tablet is for “emerging markets”, it will be available globally.
Why is the Way-C produced in China? Mankou says, “For the simple reason that Congo has no factories and for price reasons.”
The tablet comes standard with Wi-Fi, but there are future 3G plans. Mankou’s company, VMK concluded a partnership with Indian-based telecoms firm Bharti. Speaking about the partnership, Mankou says: “With this company, we are also going to conclude a partnership to use 3G, because the tablet only has integrated Wi-Fi.”
Come 15 February , the US$300 tablet will launch in ten other West African countries, as well as France, Belgium and India. Watch the video for further information
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