India develops world's cheapest portable PC at $35

Groundbreaking device could be produced globally in the near future.

At $35, the world's cheapest portable personal computing device, variously dubbed as a "laptop" or "tablet" PC, was unveiled last week by India's human resource development minister.

The Linux-based touch-screen computer features a web browser, office productivity software, PDF reader and videoconferencing technology. Its flexible hardware allows for the incorporation of new components according to users' requirements.

The minister, Kapil Sibal, said the device would be introduced to higher education institutions next year, but the aim was to lower the price further to $20, and eventually to $10.

The device - whose hardware specifics are unclear from reports - was developed by researchers at the Indian Institutes of Technology and the Indian Institute of Science.

Sibal also said his ministry has commenced talks with global manufacturers to start mass production of the portable computer.