Communist tablet?

This story is sketchy and unsourced, but it claims that the Chinese Communist Party has commissioned its own Android tablet, a boondoggle that costs twice as much as an iPad and comes with a state-run miniblogging app, an app for reading state newspapers, and an app for reading official announcements. I'm blogging it because even if it turns out to be a hoax, I want to stick it in the rock-tumbler for potential inclusion in a science fiction story. (Thanks, Steven!)


    1. In Game One, I assume, he awards you penalty cards so you can figure out what to do. No talking is the easy one.

  1. The Communist tablet weighs 20 kg, because it’s designed with the Worker in mind.

    The Communist tablet contributes to the good of the whole by running distributed background processes that are busy calculating the optimal price of the Communist Tablet (as well as scanning thousands of emails for defamation against the State).   This also makes the Communist Tablet slow to the point of unusability.

    The Communist Tablet saves people from the treacherous temptations of free enterprise by including Angry Birds Manchuria.  There’s no way you’d ever get your shit together to start a business if you’re busy smashing some Bourgeois Pigs in Angry Birds Manchuria- especially since the tablet is so slow it takes 2 minutes to load the next level.

    An iPad can be used to coordinate with your friends to find a good party.  With the Communist Tablet, party always finds YOU.

    1. The Communist tablet looks suspiciously like an all-in-one PC with the legs cut off and connected, via power cord, to a car battery in a little red wagon

    2. Two corrections I can’t resist in pointing out:

      The Communist tablet is little and red!
      The Communist tablet’s game app is The Great Angry Sparrow Campaign!

  2. The guy with the bicycle-powered mobile pay-per-charge station is going to new a new Communist attachment….

  3. If it’s a communist tablet, does that mean everyone will get one?
    Or that they will be upgradeable so that all tablets are equal but some are more equal than others?

  4. Nowhere in the article did it say the tablet was commissioned by the Party. Even the manufacturer, who makes all kinds of wild claims about the device, doesn’t even claim to be officially endorsed by the Party. I suspect the whole thing is a hoax, but at least one website has tried to actually contact the company and ask them about it:

  5. it seems like a strange development considering china already has a plethora of beyond dirt cheap android tablets.

  6. Meh, already saw this on News Corps’ iPad publication. A credit to capitalist ingenuity that they combined all 3 of those apps into just one. 

  7. Similar idea to the Volksemfaenger, a radio sold/given to people in Nazi Germany with only the state station available. I think North Korea do something like that as well. Jonathan Zittrain wrote about these limited-by-design things in his 2008 book.

    1. This tablet isn’t for the “people”, it’s for officials. It’s also not limited to only one news source.

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