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Choosing A BYOD device for school
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Different school subjects

In a typical day a student might type an English assignment, jot down history notes, figure out maths equations, video a science experiment and record a speech. You'll need a device that lets them work effectively in every subject area.

Essential Features

1. 10" (minimum) screen, touchscreen and keyboard

  • A minimum of a 10" screen - larger for creative or technical work
  • A touchscreen for browsing and writing class notes
  • A keyboard for typing assignments

Creativity, innovation and composition

Students need apps like "Kids Story Builder" to create a story. But they also want cloud services like Microsoft Office 365 to collaborate and communicate from anywhere. Plus they need practice with the software that's used in the workplace using Microsoft Office.

Essential Features

2. Runs both apps and programs

  • Windows 8.1 - apps and settings go with you across all devices
  • Able to run programs such as Microsoft Office, Adobe Photoshop or AutoCad

Working from different places

Students need to connect to the school wireless network.

Essential Features

3. Dual Band WiFi Access

  • Make sure it has 2.4Ghz or 5Ghz dual band wireless to access the school network

The school backpack

Keep it light on their back.

Essential Features

4. Lightweight

  • Aim for under 1.5Kg

6-hour days

No one wants to run out of battery half-way through the school day.

Essential Features

5. 6-hour battery life minimum

  • Make sure it lasts a 6-hour school day
  • Look for an Intel® 4th Generation Core™ processor to help stretch battery life further

File swapping

You can email small files, but not video projects and large images. Plus student seed to be able to connect their device to printers, sensors, probes, thermometers and more for science.

Essential Features

6. USB ports

  • Needed to connect digital peripherals, such as a microscope, a printer, graphics tablet, a musical keyboard, thermometer, light meter, etc

Lots of different software

Make sure the device can run demanding programs for music, design, science and technology classes.

Recomended Features

7. High performance

  • For primary students, Intel Atom™, Celeron® and Pentium processors are good
  • For secondary and beyond look for, Intel Core™ i3, Core™ i5 and Core™ i7 processors

Note-taking and brainstorming

Students are more comfortable making notes, sketching, writing maths equations, science formulae and foreign languages with a pen.

Recomended Features

8. Pen

  • High fidelity digitised pen with active screen is essential for note-taking, sketching, writing maths and science equations

Rough and tumble

Your child will probably drop the device and may spill things on it, so it needs to be tough and protected.

Recomended Features

9. Durable for everyday school use

  • Insist on a protective case
  • Look for solid state drives

Lots of files, videos, music and more

Students need plenty of room for applications and their own files.

Recomended Features

10. Storage

  • Go for at least 128GB of storage in laptops, ultrabooks and two-in-ones
  • At least 32GB of storage in tablets is recommended

Safely browsing multiple sites

What family safety software is available/included on the device? Remember, when your child is not at school there may not be protective measures on the WiFi network.

Recomended Features

11. Family safety software

  • Windows Defender and SmartScreen
  • Windows Family Settings

Further Resources

*Check whether your child's school has specific computer device requirments or recommendations. Microsoft and Intel developed these key criteria by researching a range of school recommendations, and surveying our Expert Educators and Education Master trainers – all of whom have rolled out device programs in schools or teach in schools.


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