|iPad mini photo by Lindblom|
Once we chose iPads for our students, the choices were fairly simple:
*The new iPad or the iPad2?
*The Basic 16GB of memory or more?
*Black or white.
We chose the New 32 GB iPad and allowed the students were allowed to choose black or white.
As it turned out, no one complained about getting the newest iPad with its great camera and retina screen. The memory size has also worked, No one has hit her limit but many students and teachers have exceeded the standard 16GB of memory.
Since things have worked out so well, it would be nice to go with the status quo for one year. However, in the world of mobile computing, a lot changes in a year. For example, Apple introduced the iPad mini.
The most obvious reasons to offer this as an option would be price and added mobility. The 32GB model is presently listed for $170 less than the larger one that we use. And, as widely touted, it is small enough to fit in one hand yet the mini seemingly has the same functionality and runs the same apps as its larger sibling.
When the subject came up at a recent tech meeting, I expressed a concern about burdening ourselves down with selection and inventory. We have a small team, and one of our greatest successes of Mercy 2.0 was selling our students’ devices directly to parents without a hitch. I am concerned that complications could effect our “customer satisfaction.” Furthermore, when I brought up the subject at our recent Open House, parents did not appear to be especially interested.
On the other hand, many of our kids are quite used to reading on a smaller screen– their phones. And it would be nice to offer a less expensive option.
Of course the biggest issue would be as to whether the student’s learning experience might be effected. Would the smaller screen hinder the student’s ability to take notes, read, run apps, etc. We obviously need to do some beta-testing in order to find out. Currently, our iWizards are giving our loaner Mini a test run.
In the mean time we would love to have your comments as feedback.