Today, Microsoft, in association with Intel Corporation East Africa and the Kenya Private Schools Alliance, have announced the launch of the Youth Device Program, to provide a bundle of affordable devices, educational applications, online services, affordable data plans, and smart financing to Kenyan learning institutions.
This is part of Microsoft 4Afrika’s Youth Initiative that launched earlier this year to provide scholarships, fellowships, and internships to thousands of African youth. The Device Program will start in Kenya, and will look to roll out in further African countries including Egypt, South Africa, and Nigeria. The aim is to equip youth with 21st century skills and promote digital inclusion amongst Africa’s youth and educators across the continent.
A range of Microsoft and Intel devices and services in different form factors will be available, each one preloaded with education applications including Intel’s Explore & Learn, the full Office 365 suite, and Skype. The devices based on Intel architecture are purpose built for education – they are student-friendly rugged designs that are water-resistant and dust-resistant to promote anytime, anywhere learning.
These devices are available from a number of manufacturers and will be distributed locally by Mitsumi Distribution. Microsoft and Intel will also be offering training for the teachers on ICT integration via the Intel Teach curriculum and Microsoft’s Teach with Technology course. The aim is to not only offer a range of affordable devices with educational applications and online services, but to deliver experiences that students and educators love, and training and support for the education partner ecosystem.
Specifically tailored finance options will also be provided through loans from Kenya’s Equity Bank and M-Changa, a mobile money-based way to contribute towards the purchase of devices. Special data packages from Safaricom will also be provided, consisting of 5 gigabyte and 10 gigabyte bundles. For more information please read the blog here
Devices on offer include:
- · iSurf Windows Portable
- · Acer Iconia W511
- · Asus Transformer book
- · Samsung ATIV TAB 3
- · Windows 8 powered Nokia smartphones
- · Intel Classmate PC
Educational applications include
- · Intel Explore & Learn
- · Khan Academy suite – a personalised learning solution providing over 100,000 exercise problems and over 4 000 micro lectures via video tutorials, digital books and educational games
- · Office 365 including PowerPoint, Excel, Word
- · Skype in the classroom
- · Digital books
- · Educational games