The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the integration of technology in education. With schools shutting down worldwide, remote and hybrid learning has become the norm.
The pandemic has accelerated schools' reliance on technology. It made a pathway for taking new and different approaches to education.
Several schools have already adopted Bring-your-own-device (BYOD) into their curriculum before the pandemic. BYOD provides flexibility for students to participate in the classroom or at home. Knowing that students have suitable devices, especially for remote learning, will put a lot of teachers' minds at ease.
The right devices for learning
One of the biggest things schools would like parents to avoid is buying consumer devices. Although these devices are affordable, many teachers notice some students need a new laptop further down the track.
To begin with, consumer devices may not always have the right hardware or system requirements for education purposes. With so many laptops and tablets in the market, selecting which devices have the best features and are suitable for school can be difficult.
Buying the right device boils down to three main points – the operating system, the student’s education level, and the type of device.
To make it easier, PB Tech has created a dedicated BYOD portal and customisable for every school in New Zealand. So far, there are already over 250 primary and secondary schools using their own BYOD portal page. Teachers can configure their school’s page with an approved list of devices students can use.
Our education team has assembled the latest back-to-school BYOD selection of laptops, tablets, and desktops for students. Whatever the student’s device preference is, PB Tech offers plenty of options to suit every student’s learning needs.
Affordable and easy to use – Chromebooks
Google Chromebooks are a popular BYOD device in New Zealand because they are affordable and simple to use. It’s a popular device for primary and intermediate school and a great introductory laptop for students to use at school.
Chromebooks run on a unique operating system called Chrome OS and are a simple solution for fast, intuitive, and easy-to-manage computing. Designed with education and the classroom in mind, Chromebooks come with web applications like Google Docs, Slides and Sheets. It’s a suitable device for remote learning and ensures students can connect and collaborate in virtual classrooms and with their classmates.
Most applications are web-based, so access to a WiFi connection at home and school will be a must, but applications and documents will be centralised and accessible on Chromebooks and Android phones. Plus, all the student’s work is stored online – if anything happens to their Chromebook, it will be backed up. Students can log into another Chromebook and access their files with no issues.
It can be time-consuming for the IT team to manually set up each student's laptop to the school's network. Using Zero-touch enrolment, students are automatically enrolled into the school's domain once they connect to the internet. Zero-touch compatible Chromebooks come in various sizes and brands such as Lenovo, HP, Acer, and ASUS.
Recommended BYOD Chromebook Laptops
Built to handle demanding workloads – Windows Laptops
Windows laptops are suitable for any school level, especially when students are starting to use more advanced software. These laptops are ideal for secondary school and tertiary students who need devices with higher processing power to multitask and tackle complex programs.
The latest Windows 11 operating system offers new and improved features designed for remote learning alongside an overall fresh design and user interface.
Windows 11 is designed with hybrid learning in mind with communication and collaboration tools optimised into the operating system. It creates minimal interruptions and ensures students stay connected while learning from home.
With Windows Autopilot and Intune, schools can preconfigure new devices, getting them ready for students to use straight out of the box. IT managers don't need to worry about the long and time-consuming process of setting up Windows OS on students' devices.
Windows Autopilot is a faster, more reliable way to deploy Windows OS and applications on new devices. Schools can also personalise the device in advance by adding the school logo or applications students need for learning. Compatible Windows laptops are available at various price points from vendors such as Lenovo, HP, and ASUS.
Recommended Windows 11 BYOD Laptops
Inspire young minds – Apple BYOD devices
PB Tech works closely with Apple New Zealand. We are an authorised Apple Education Reseller bringing a wide range of Apple devices to students and teachers.
iMacs and MacBooks are popular devices for secondary and tertiary education. MacBooks are lightweight and portable, ideal for students commuting to school. It runs various programmes, such as Garageband and iMovie, that aren’t available on Windows computers.
Apple laptops and desktops are popular for students taking photography or graphic design classes due to the high-resolution Retina display on their screens. The Retina display shows more detail and improves the image quality, making a big difference for conscientious art students who want to ensure that the colours on their design projects are accurate.
iPads are a popular choice for students who don’t require desktop-based applications. It’s also a great alternative to a bulky laptop, and students can pair various Apple accessories with their iPad to make learning more interactive. Click here to read the Top iPads for education.
Taking notes and editing documents can be easier using a keyboard or a stylus pencil. The Apple Pencil is a popular iPad accessory for students. It allows them to draw, edit files, and replace traditional paper and pencil notetaking.