Converge, September 1998, p. 66

A poll in Converge asked teachers, technology coordinators, and assistant superintendents what criteria they use when selecting PCs. Their top answers were:

  1. Pricing should be below $2,000.

  2. Toll-free phone support should be available from the vendor for purchasing, technical support, and general service questions.

  3. The PC should offer should be simple, versatile, and expandable connectivity options — i.e., preloaded hardware and software that quickly connects a PC to a school’s local network or the Internet.

  4. The PC should upgrade easily and be able to use non-proprietary components, which can keep future repair costs down.

While these are the chief concerns of many education technology purchasers and decision makers, other concerns are beginning to play a role in product selection as well.

Many look for PCs to come bundled with the latest and greatest hardware already installed on them, including networking cards, CD-ROM drives, ZIP drives, 56-K modems, monitors, and speakers. Purchasers are also seeking out vendors who can provide total “site solutions,” where a PC vendor not only provides desktop computers but also recommends and even installs network devices, file servers, and Internet connections.