Microsoft and its hardware partners on Monday unveiled a range of devices at various price points to help U.S. public school districts make the digital transition.
The devices are lightweight enough to conduct research and take assessments. Their prices start under $300 and are part of Microsoft's global YouthSpark initiative to empower youth through technology. Microsoft's investment is in partnership with President Obama's ConnectED initiative to advance technology and learning in the classroom.
In addition, Microsoft exam delivery provider Certiport Inc. is providing certification exams worth over $5 million following students' completion of Microsoft IT Academy training. The Microsoft IT Academy provides a complete technology and certification training solution for schools, and is part of Microsoft's $1 million investment in reaching the 2,000 highest needs schools in the U.S.
To fit the various needs of schools, devices from Microsoft partners include a range of form factors, from various-sized tablets to full laptops. Device options include the Acer Travelmate TMB113-E, ASUS Transformer Book T100, Dell Venue 11 Pro, FUJITSU STYLISTIC Q704, HP 210 Notebook PC and HP ElitePad 1000, Lenovo ThinkPad 11e, Toshiba Satellite NB15t, and a new student device from Panasonic scheduled to launch at ISTE 2014. All of the devices are Common Core testing compliant and feature Windows 8.1.
All U.S. public schools are eligible for this education offer and can contact their technology reseller or Microsoft for additional details or to access an official letter of eligibility. More information on the offer can also be found at http://www.microsoft.com/education/ConnectED.