Comcast offers services to learn and teach from home

Comcast is opening its Xfinity WiFi Network Nationally for Free, Offers Unlimited Data for Free, Confirms Its Commitment to Connecting Low-Income Families

On the heels of offering new, low-income Internet Essentials customers two months of free internet and raising the speed of that program’s service to 25/3 Mbps, Comcast today announced additional steps to help ensure people stay connected to the Internet as more schools suspend classes and companies encourage employees to work from home due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Comcast is taking steps to implement the following new policies for the next 60 days, and other important initiatives:…Read More

Sennheiser adds audio conferencing solution, TeamConnect with wireless or ceiling mics

Audio mics pick up who is speaking during conferences

Sennheiser’s TeamConnect is an end-to-end, professional-grade conferencing solution for medium to large conference rooms. TeamConnect can be integrated into any infrastructure or conference room to deliver leading-edge connectivity options for “bring your own device” IT environments, support for all leading unified communication solutions and brilliant sound quality.

Sennheiser TeamConnect is a complete audio solution for businesses. Consisting of the Central Unit CU1 – which offers both Ethernet and wifi connectivity options, a choice of fixed or table-top SpeechLine microphones or the new TeamConnect Ceiling microphone, and active loudspeakers, TeamConnect has everything needed to cater for medium to large conference rooms.

“TeamConnect is a classic, reliable audio solution, which is designed to be integrated into any infrastructure or room. It can be used with landline or Unified Communication clients, and either permanently installed or set up for flexible use,” said Jens Werner, Portfolio Manager Sennheiser. “As well as being easily linked to networks, it is also very easy to operate, both by IT and for end users, with powerful fine-tuning software to ensure effective installation and simple app- and browser- based tools for controlling conferences on a user’s own device.”…Read More

7 things you need to know now about E-rate changes

Big E-rate changes mean schools must chart a new path

A bigger annual cap isn’t the only recent change to the E-rate program. New forms, new data, the potential for infrastructure discounts, and (even more) new funding are all colliding to create one of the most challenging application periods in memory. We asked E-rate guru John Harrington, CEO of Funds for Learning, for his application-time thoughts and advice.

There is a lot of funding available

“This year this is a record amount of money available. The FCC increased the funding cap and they’ve been very diligent about going back and accounting for underutilized discounts. When schools apply for their discounts, they have to provide an estimate, and usually they err on the high side because you can’t go back later. It’s like if I told you, ‘Hey, you can get a discount on your phone bill, but you need to estimate it now.’ You might go back and add a few points.

“There’s often little percentage points that were underutilized, because they just weren’t needed. Those dollars accumulate over time, and, this past December, resulted in a rollover of a few billion dollars. Between the increase and the leftover dollars, they have over $5 billion to commit for projects.”…Read More

Are cables in the classroom a thing of the past? Maybe

HDMI over wi-fi is ready to obsolete cables and transform the classroom—almost

cables-wifiWires in classrooms are an inconvenience, yet they have been an inescapable fact of life for over a decade. With the advent of mobile technologies, things haven’t changed quite as much as one might expect.

Many traditional classrooms and learning spaces have a data projector or TV screen that is used by the teacher or students to present information. They usually connect to a computer via HDMI cable or similar that is placed in a “convenient” location.

However, a convenient location for one person may not be the best location for another person. Cables force the teacher to stay at that location while navigating the materials on the computer.…Read More