How to Implement Mobile Classroom Technology on a Budget
Happy New Year! With all the resolutions that have come (and most likely gone by now) marketers are quickly spreading the word on new products that are coming out this year and there is one that deserves the attention of schools. Specifically if your school wants to deploy a new 1:1 program in the upcoming year but can’t fathom spending $700.00 a student on a new iPad. Welcome to the club the new Polaroid Tablet. Coming in at the low prices of $129.00 for the 7”, $149.00 for the 8” and $179.00 for the 10.1” they will be hard to beat in budgeting board rooms.
The latest tablets will run Google’s latest mobile operating system Android 4.4 KitKat. Not much else is known about the tablet at this time except it will include front and rear cameras, HDMI out, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity and front-facing speakers. They are said to pack 1GB of RAM and 8 or 16GB of internal storage.
With the tablet manufacturers hitting the scene at increased rates it won’t be long until even classrooms that have only dreamed about allowing tablets for students will be able to get their hands on them.
So, act now.
Now is the time to build the proper infrastructure for when the board finally allows the budgets to be put through to get the newest latest tablets. Here are some things to consider when planning for a wireless infrastructure refresh for all those mobile devices:
- Scalability: Make sure to have a network that can start you off today and build you into the future with little to no effort. A true scalable network will allow you to buy 10 Access Points now and further down the road allow for you to simply pop up 25 more that will automatically configure to your network. Find a solution that allows for that to move you into the future!
- Centralized Management: Make sure you have a very smart way of managing all the access points in your network from one centralized location with allowance for configuring and updating to be made only once and then the system will update and configure from there.
- Role Based Access Control: To build policies based on users is a MUST for security and proper assignment of that coveted bandwidth! Make sure your solution allows for allocation of roles to the wireless device based on how it is authenticated. Choose a solution that can integrate with active directory and assign a role based on who the user is and what device they are connecting to. Once the device and user are defined access control rules can be established. Users can then be segmented into groups to limit what they can access based on their role. And voila, bandwidth saved!
- High Capacity Load Balancing: The tablets we all covet need an infrastructure built for capacity not just coverage. Their manufactured ability to save batter power makes them unable to talk back to the access points based on that same low transmit power. You need an access point near the devices that will be working and needing coverage. For further research make sure to get a proper Wireless Design before implementing any type of Wireless Network Refresh. See, “What Should Be Included In A Wireless Network Design.”
We have designed and installed hundreds of school wireless network systems and can help with planning, designing and deploying based on your specific needs. Contact us here with any questions r a free consultation.