Microsoft unveils $200 Windows 10 laptops for schools

23 January, 2018, 01:42 | Author: Bridget Leonard
  • JP Windows 10

This week at the Bett show in London, Microsoft made its first education announcements for 2018.

"Our new Windows 10 devices won't force schools to compromise on features, giving schools cutting-edge tools like touch, inking, and 3D as well as free accessibility technology like Learning Tools, which improve reading comprehension by 10 percentile points for students of all abilities". Apple has always been Microsoft's competitor in the educational sector, and now the company must also do battle with Google's Chromebook platform in the classroom. Microsoft also announced two analogous systems (at the same USA prices) from JP, its big partner in emerging economies. So today, Microsoft announced a number of new Windows 10 devices that cost as little as $189. The 100e notebook carries an Intel Apollo Lake Celeron as its beating heart.

The new Lenovo laptops are also joined by two similar devices from JP.

Mehdi gives Google credit where he believes credit is due: He says that Chromebooks didn't actually steal any marketshare away from Microsoft, per se; Google just discovered a previously-unmet demand for low-cost laptops and "made it affordable to have a computer in the classroom".

All four are rugged, spill-resistant, and have all-day battery life, Microsoft said.


Microsoft is pushing augmented and virtual reality headsets as being a key tool for education, dropping the price for its Hololens headsets for academic institutions until the end of May this year.

The fine print: Qualified K-12 schools that purchase 30 or more Microsoft 365 A1 licenses are eligible for free training up to a maximum of 3 days, provided by select, qualified Microsoft Education Training Partners.

The tech company is also working with PBS, NASA, the BBC and LEGO for a variety of STEM learning and mixed reality projects. "Shrinking budgets can lead schools to choose devices with a stripped-down experience and a limited lifespan, unfortunately costing more over time and offering less to students".

In an interview, Microsoft Vice President for Worldwide Education Anthony Salcito said the company has collected feedback from its K-12 users about what it can do better-and it is responding. Microsoft also is making Teams - its Slack competitor - accessible on iOS and Android, as part of its quest to make Teams the "digital hub for the classroom".

PowerPoint will now allow teachers to record their lessons including slides, interactive ink, video, and narrations and publish to their Stream channel in Teams classrooms. The company will roll out a new Chemistry update for Minecraft: Education Edition this spring.

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