Controlling costs a key selling point for ed-tech vendors

FrontRow showcased a new touch-screen control panel for its ezRoom AV control systems. The new product (model CB6000) organizes all classroom device control into a single screen and gives IT administrators remote and scheduled control of practically any device over their network, saving potentially thousands of dollars per year in projector bulb life alone, the company said.

AT&T discussed its Synaptic Storage as a Service offering. With this utility hosting solution, schools can tap into virtualized resources within five globally located AT&T Internet Data Centers to quickly scale their computer capacity up or down, AT&T said. AT&T manages and supports the infrastructure, so schools don’t have to worry about this. Unlike a physical storage unit, AT&T Synaptic Storage keeps stretching as you pack data inside. Schools don’t have to deal with procurement processes, setup costs, and time delays to obtain additional storage, the company said; instead, storage capacity can expand and shrink as needed based on a school’s needs, and schools only pay for what they use.

PEPPM was at the Florida Educational Technology Conference to discuss how its national bidding and purchasing program can help schools save money when buying computers and other technology. Since 1982, the program—administered by Pennsylvania’s Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit—has helped schools, libraries, and government agencies buy more than $2 billion in technology at discounted prices, while also saving on bidding costs. PEPPM does the legwork for schools by soliciting national bids on hardware and software, ensuring that schools pay the lowest prices for technology that meets their needs, the organization says.

Another organization that can save schools money when buying technology is the Canadian company CDI Computers, which sells recertified computers to schools at a fraction of the cost of brand-new machines.

CDI partners with major leasing companies and manufacturers to procure used computers. Many corporations lease computers for one to three years, and CDI buys these computers after the corporate leases end. The company then cleans and restores the computers both internally and externally and performs custom configurations to its clients’ specifications. All CDI computers come with full warranties.

CDI helped make an award-winning one-to-one computing program possible for Alabama’s Cullman City Schools. CDI supplies Cullman schools with recertified Dell computers; at about $600 a unit, the CDI computers are almost half the price of new $1,000 units.

“The CDI computers looked the same and were a lot faster than the old computers they were using, because everything’s updated,” said Andy Palys, the district’s data communications technician. “What CDI has given us the ability to do has been to buy more computers than we normally would be able to.”

eSchool News Staff

Want to share a great resource? Let us know at


We’re Celebrating 25 Years with 25 Giveaways!

Enter Each Day to Win the Daily Gift Card Giveaway

and the Grand Prize drawing for an

Apple iPad!

Visit eSchool News each day through April 1, 2023 to enter the daily $25 Gift Card drawing.
Each daily entry counts as one entry for the grand prize drawing. See details and rules.
Giveaway is open only to legal residents of the fifty (50) United States and Canada who are employed full- or part-time in K-12 education.