Two handy products to support school iPad use

These two products could make iPad deployments more convenient for schools

Here are two products that could help make iPad rollouts easier for schools.

At the Texas Computer Education Association (TCEA) conference last week, our editors were on the lookout for innovative, yet practical ed-tech products and services.

Here are two such products that could help make iPad rollouts more convenient for schools.

New ‘app-enabled’ charging stations can notify you when iPads are charged—or removed

At TCEA, Bretford introduced what it calls “the world’s first app-enabled charge and sync products” for iOS devices.

The products enable you to check on the status of iPads remotely using Bretford’s new PowerSync+ mobile app; they’ll alert you when the devices are fully charged, and they’ll even let you know if an iPad is removed after hours or if not all of the devices are returned (for added security).

Designed to store, charge, and sync iPads or iPad minis, Bretford’s new app-enabled products come in three designs:

• The PowerSync Cart 40, which sells for $3,000, can hold up to 40 iPads.

• The PowerSync Cart 20, which sells for $2,400, can hold up to 20 iPads, and it includes totes for storing headphones or other peripheral devices underneath—making it a useful tool for deploying iPads for online testing.

• The PowerSync Station 20, which sells for $2,000, can be mounted on a wall or flat surface. You can stack these units up to three high for additional storage, Bretford says.

All of Bretford’s app-enabled charge and sync products are available directly through Apple when you buy iPad devices.

(Next page: iPad servicing that’s cheaper and easier than AppleCare)

Texas Mac Repair offers low-cost, convenient iPad servicing

Texas Mac Repair has serviced Apple equipment for 15 years. The company fixes damaged iPads and MacBooks, and it also sells used iPads, parts, and training to schools.

“Many people don’t know this, but Apple doesn’t actually repair iPads,” said founder Les Bergquist.

Schools using Apple’s service contract must pay a deductible, he said, and then they get back refurbished or replacement machines, without the original apps—meaning school IT staff have to restore the apps on their own. Texas Mac Repair will try to fix the original iPad if possible.

What’s more, each iPad you send back to Apple for servicing must be individually boxed with its own shipping label, Bergquist said—which can be a hassle for school systems that want to ship several of the devices at once. With Texas Mac Repair, schools don’t have that problem.

For more news about TCEA exhibitors, see:

Four school video tools worth exploring

zSpace takes 3D learning to a whole new level

The company’s most expensive iPad service contract costs $40 per device, but it doesn’t include a deductible. One-year service contracts start at $19 per device.

Troy Bagwell, director of technology for the Decatur Independent School District in Texas, said his district has worked with Texas Mac Repair for a year and a half. Decatur uses the company to repair iPads from its one-to-one iPad program at McCarroll Middle School, which serves 730 students in grades 6-8.

“We were looking at $79 per device for AppleCare,” Bagwell said. District officials decided it would be more cost-effective to save this money and pay for repairs as needed, shipping the devices to Texas Mac Repair for this work. The district collects a $50 breakage fee from the student’s family to help offset the cost of repairs.

“Using Texas Mac Repair has been a very convenient service for our district,” Bagwell said. “It has been very seamless for us.”

Follow eSchool News Editor in Chief Dennis Pierce at @eSN_Dennis.

Sign up for our K-12 newsletter

Newsletter: Innovations in K12 Education
By submitting your information, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Dennis Pierce

Want to share a great resource? Let us know at submissions@eschoolmedia.com.

eSchool News uses cookies to improve your experience. Visit our Privacy Policy for more information.