Novatium, one of the 14 corporate entities incubated by the Telecom and Networks Group of IIT Madras, will introduce a Multimedia NetPC in February that would cost as low as Rs 7,000 (approximately $160).
The PC, to essentially consist of a monitor and a keyboard, will work in the same way as a mobile phone.
It can be used in offices and schools where a group of 25 PCs can be interconnected through a server and a digital subscriber line.
Explaining the salient features of the product, Ashok Jhunjhunwala, professor of electrical engineering at the institute and a member of the TeNeT Group, said, "The PC can work on Windows or Linux operating systems with no virus or backup issues."
It will perform simple office applications too, he added.
The technology, being a forerunner, is also touted to bring down the high capital costs of setting up BPOs in future.
A similar cost-effective simple office computing platform, SofCom costing around Rs 10,000, was earlier developed by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research under the New Millennium Indian Technology Leadership Initiative programme.
In a bid to develop high quality human resources, the TeNeT Group is also planning to launch a Distributed Finishing School that will train 4,000 telecom and IT graduates every year.
The school will be launched in June 2006, in association with the Indian Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad, Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information Technology, Ahmedabad, and the LNM Institute of Information Technology, Jaipur, said Jhunjhunwala.
The TeNeT Group, formed in 1994, comprises 16 faculty members. It has so far incubated 14 corporate entities nurtured by over 1,400 engineers from various IITs, with a mission to connect every village of India not just for communication but also for education, healthcare and livelihood, and thereby double the per capita rural GDP.