Helpful Hints

Things to consider when selecting a student device.

We believe that there are a number of factors that should be considered before making this important decision.  Please call an Aliva Education Specialist if you require any additional information.



ROBUSTNESS

In relative terms, the education environment is much harsher than corporate or consumer situations as devices are constantly moved, opened and shut and then transported for home use.  Given these factors, Aliva highly recommends that you select a non-consumer device that has been manufactured to meet the rigours of student usage.  The device should have sturdy metal hinges, a strong alloy chassis and minimum 11.5”screen.


HARD DRIVE

Until recently users had little choice in what sort of storage they got with their PC’s, notebooks and tablets.  The price gap between traditional hard drives and SSD (Solid State Drives) has closed considerably and SSD offer greater levels of reliability and performance. SSD’s lack of moving parts makes them far less susceptible to damage and/or loss of data when a device is constantly moved (vibrations) or dropped. 

PERFORMANCE
The performance requirements for students can vary significantly, as they move from grade to grade and/or select new subjects.  Whilst Atom™ and Pentium®processors are generally suitable for primary students, we recommend high school students select devices that incorporate current processors e.g. Core M, i3, i5 or i7. These processors (i5 andi7) complimented with SSD storage and 4 or 8GB of Memory should adequately handle the most demanding of school applications for years to come.

BATTERYBattery life varies between manufacturers’ models and we recommend that a student device offers a minimum of six (6) hours battery life.  You don’t want to lose all power and be unable to participate in a classroom activity.  Remember that the student won't always have access to a power point, so charge the battery overnight and monitor the battery life, as battery’s life decreases over time.

PROTECTIONSchool bags can take a beating, so we recommend protection of your computer investment.  You can chose to protect your notebook in a hard case that fits in a larger student carry bag or select a protective case that can be carried separately.

WEIGHTText books, notebooks and other“necessaries” can become quite heavy for a student to carry around everyday.  Consequently, we recommend that the device be under 1.5kgs and no heavier than 2KG’s. If the notebook offers a battery life of more than 6 hours then the student does not have to carry a battery charger.

CONNECTIVITYWireless Connectivity is essential for the both in and out of the classroom. You may also want to “tether” the device to a mobile phone when wireless connectivity is unavailable.  Dual Band capability is also a must as your school uses the 5Ghz wireless band and at home you would likely use the 2.4Ghz Band.

SCREEN SIZEChoosing the optimal screen size can be confusing but consider the individual users requirements and the choice becomes easier. Any smaller than 11.5” and it could affect visual usability.Any larger than 14” and it will affect weight and battery life. Remember that at home, you can always plug in a monitor to work on a bigger screen.

TOUCHSome models also offer a Touch Screen option. This will allow you to navigate the screen more intuitively and can increase productivity by utilising a digitiser Pen. Pen based learning and hand written notes are proven to increase retention and learning with some schools even beginning to introduce this technology into their curriculum.

WARRANTY & ADPStudents will typically use (abuse) their notebooks for 3 years. Their notebooks will become their most important learning tool during this time so the typical warranty on consumer products of 12 months Return to Base Warranty just does not cut it. If something should go wrong, a warranty that lasts 3 years and is Onsite will alleviate concerns. Aliva also recommends Accidental Damage Protection Insurance for added peace of mind.