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Junior Activity Week 

Buying the Right Device – Recommended Specifications

It is recomended that you use a Windows
(Laptop or netbook) or Apple  (ibook prefered
If a windows device Windows 7 home premium or better is recommended.
  ( Some of the cheaper ones have home basic or starter which will work fine but will have some limitations). 
Vista is the earliest windows OS that will work well with our network.
Note students who are doing art design and graphics will usually need a higher specification laptop rather than a netbook to run design software.

iPads and Android based Pads should work as well but have not been tested. 

Battery Life – Should last 5-6 hours to be able to get through a school day without recharging. We

Weight – Should be light enough for your child to carry around all day, anything more than 1.5kg including the case might be too heavy.

Wireless – Must be dual-band capable, and state that it has a/g/n, or a/b/g/n.

RAM – Should be 2GB or more, or else programmes may be much slower to run.

CPU – Faster is usually better, but may also reduce battery life. Intel Atom CPU’s mean longer battery life, and Core i3 or i5 are more powerful but reduce battery life, so discuss your needs with the supplier. (i3 or i5 Windows Laptops or Apple ibooks would be better for graphics and Design type subjects)

Hard Disk Drive – Should be at least 160GB. Some newer devices may feature SSD drives, which are faster, lighter, are more reliable and give longer battery life, because they have no moving parts, but they are also much more expensive.

Robustness – Your device should be strong enough to survive a fall onto a hard surface. Check also that the hinges are robust as some of the cheaper devices are quite weak.

Insurance – While we take care to protect students’ property, we cannot accept responsibility for devices lost or stolen, so make sure it is covered for these possibilities. Accidental damage insurance may also be available if desired.

Warranty – Minimum warranty is 1-year, but you may want to consider upgrading this to a 2 or 3-year warranty. Another factor is how long the device will be away for should it require repair under warranty, it could be a few days, or as long as a few weeks.

Optional USB DVD – Some devices such as Netbooks do not have a built-in DVD drive, so you may want to consider a USB DVD to be able to load any additional software you may purchase.

Anti-virus Software – Anti-virus and anti-spyware software is essential to protect the data on the device, and prevent the device being used to spread this malware to other devices at home or at school. Removing this malicious software from devices is one of the ICT Helpdesk’s most frequent requests.

Software   students will either need Microsoft office or a office suite such as Libre office that is compatible with Microsoft Office. Students doing design may require Adobe Design software such as photoshop or illustrator.  They may like to try the Opensource alternatives sich as the gimp and inkscape. 

Below are some Netbooks that other schools have found suitable. The School is intending to form a partnership with Cyclone Computers should parents wish to purchase from them however you are free to choose any provider you wish to use.   http://www.cycloneonline.co.nz/home.aspx

 HP and Dell are models have slightly better performance with higher specifications but at the expense of reduced battery time and are slightly heavier in weight.


 Toshiba NB500 Netbook