Datawind grapples with huge demand for tablets

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Old 05-Jul-2012
Datawind grapples with huge demand for tablets

After generating huge interest in the country on its tablet, the Aakash maker Datawind is now grappling with a tall order.

It has to deliver 30 lakh tablets to those who booked online. With the company unable to meet the delivery milestones, angry customers have begun to write mails seeking explanation and cancellation of bookings.

“First you said that delivery will be ensured by April-end. You changed it to May 15 and again to May 31. Your staff continue to defer the delivery dates to first week of June. It never came. I would like to cancel my booking,” customer S. Basu said in his letter to the Canadian tablet maker.

He is not the lone complainant. “I made online booking in March but got no response there after. The company is not informing about the delays proactively. We are getting only after persistent mails to the firm,” Krishna, a Government employee, said.

Datawind, however, contests that it has started deliveries. “Although thousands of units are being delivered daily, the demand and backlog is very significant,” Mr Suneet Singh Tuli, President and Chief Executive Officer, Datawind, has said.

“Supplying the product is a major task due to the growing demand. We do not consider it a roadblock, it is a sign that Datawind has a major stake in the Indian tablet market. We have put our manufacturing capacity on the fast pace to meet the demand. We are in the process of increasing the capacity,” Mr Suneet Singh said in an email response.

Meanwhile, the company is engaged in a legal battle with QUAD, the Hyderabad-based firm which alleged that it didn’t get any payments for the tablets it delivered. It later signed an agreement with VMC Systems to manufacture one lakh devices by August.

“We have finalised some other manufacturing relationships. We will elaborate more on this soon,” he said.

Even as it handles the complaints regarding the UbiSlate 7+ model (which is equivalent to Aakash-II), the company announced introduction of Ubislate 7C. At present, it doesn’t have any plans to outsource manufacturing to China or Taiwan to meet the demand.

Old 07-Jul-2012
JobanJit Singh Dhillon
Re: Datawind grapples with huge demand for tablets

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