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Bring Your Own Device

Bring Your Own Device – Buyers Guide

BYOD is all about empowering our children through technology. Using the best possible digital devices to improve their educational experience.

Using and being comfortable with digital technology is a key aspect of youth learning and development. Laptops, tablets, iPads, Surface and Chromebooks are all popular and highly useful tech learning tools, crucial for helping prepare our young people for adult life.

Typically, BYOD is most relevant to that phase in life when most primary and high school students are looking to buy their first laptop or phone.

Which type of device to choose

Commercial or Consumer device

There are two basic directions you can take for buying your first BYOD laptop – a device that is designed with an emphasis on being durable and tough or a device that is lighter, slimmer and also cost effective:

  • Something built to be extra-tough – devices that are more durable and built from strong materials to be rugged and damage / spill resistant.
  • Or choose a device that is lighter, more streamlined and ergonomic, and made from less durable products - as a result they cost less.

Both types of device will operate to a similarly high level.

Key things to look for

Multi room speakers

Hardware

Device battery life is always very important. Your student will need their device to last most of the school day without needing to be charged. Ideally 6+ hours is recommended. Anything less, and your child may not use their device as much as their teachers will expect, due to the hassle of having to charge the device in the classroom.

Performance is an important factor also, is the device powerful enough to perform the required learning tasks? Check with your child’s teacher at the school for details about how the device will be used.

Is the device strong enough to handle knocks and drops at school? We have a range of devices that are built to meet stringent durability / damage and spill-resistant standards.

Weight is significant as well. Is it light enough to carry to and from school every day? Most devices are built to be extremely lightweight and compact. Under 2kg is recommended. Keep in mind that your children will also have school bags, books and sports gear to carry.

Choose your operating system (OS) based on your school’s requirements. The large majority of schools will recommend Windows, IOS and Chrome OS. These are the most respected and frequently used OS globally.

Chromebooks use the Chrome browser operating system. This is a web-based OS that uses web based applications and cloud storage.

Windows is a hugely popular operating system guaranteed to meet students’ needs and get them completely up-to-speed for full computer literacy as an adult. With Windows you will have access to a wide variety of applications and software that can be used. You can even run and use Chrome OS applications through the Chrome browser.

Schools will outline which particular operating system will meet their curriculum requirements with regards to software and applications.

Select a screen size that provides excellent viewing but isn’t too awkward to handle. Between 10" – 14" is usually the ideal size for efficient use, easy on the eyes, but also keeps the device reasonably compact and convenient. This strikes the perfect balance between easy viewing and easy to handle size.

Software

Software

Although schools will typically have secure WiFi networks, we recommend a complete security suite on all devices to protect them from online threats. Having comprehensive security protection against online threats is very important. In particular, if your child is using their computer to access the internet anywhere other than at school you will want them to be protected.

Most well-regarded security software like Trend Micro or Norton-LifeLock will also include parental controls which allow parents to be informed about their child’s online activity while also exerting some control over what they access.

Schools will also require a word processor, spreadsheet program and presentation software (Microsoft Office or Google Docs). Some schools may supply this to their students, so make sure you check with your school regarding software requirements.

Accessories

Home Theatre

A wireless mouse, wireless keyboard and laptop bag can all be extremely useful for getting the most out of your child’s device and protecting / transporting your device. Laptop bags, laptop sleeves or laptop backpacks are all important options for protecting and transporting your child’s device.

Connectivity

Connectivity

To get the most of your device, having the latest WiFi capability will give your student the freedom to be connected easily at home or in the classroom. USB Ports are very standard and necessary to allow installation of software and to transfer files. As well as connecting to utilise printers, using a keyboard and mouse.

Having an HDMI port is a requirement for most schools. Students may need to connect to an external display to show and present from the device. Having a wireless connection is a must-have as it's the most popular way to access a network or the internet. Some schools may require a LAN connection, which most laptops have as well.

Accidental Damage Cover

Accidental

Pay a little extra and get Accidental Damage Cover so that your child’s device is covered if an unexpected accident happens.

Laptops, Tablets and Mobile Phones, can all be covered for accidental damage.

There is a small excess payment applicable on each claim: $50 for products $501 and below and $75 for products above $501.

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