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Old 06-03-2012, 11:49 PM   #151 (permalink)
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More tablets next year - The Nation

More tablets next year

WANNAPA KHAOPA
THE NATION March 7, 2012 1:00 am


Education Minister Suchart Tadathamrongvej said yesterday Matthayom 1 students would get free tablet computers in next academic year.


"We use technology to develop education," he said.

"Tablets are like new teachers that students can learn from whenever they want," he said after launching the "Future of Thai Education" symposium at Impact Arena Muang Thong Thani.

During the opening ceremony, he said teachers and parents should also learn and search for knowledge from the tablet computers.

The ministry might allow students to take the tablets with them after three years of use without returning them to the schools, he said.

Schools that get the tablets in the next academic year should install chess, which is being used overseas to help students develop strategic planning skills.

Yesterday's event was held to demonstrate the capacity of Thai education and to encourage agencies to embrace changes ahead of the Asean Economic Community (AEC). It also aims to disseminate education policies to the public before it ends today.

The event also includes exhibitions showcasing the ministry's policies and projects, including "one student one tablet, one district one scholarship", as well as activities on Asean, teacher reform, education quality, education on TV and other media among other things.
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Old 07-03-2012, 08:22 AM   #152 (permalink)
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Experts back school tablet PCs | Bangkok Post: news

Experts back school tablet PCs

Scope computers 'meet quality, safety levels'
The tablet PCs to be given to Prathom 1 children (first-graders) starting next school term are of acceptable quality and safety standards but how they will be used and their content remain a concern, leading technology experts say.


Loggingon to learning

A student tries his hand at computerbased learning during an Education Ministrysponsored exhibition showcasing national educational development efforts ahead of the launch of the Asean Economy Community in 2015. The exhibition runs until today in Halls 1 and 2 at Impact Arena, Muang Thong Thani.
THITI WANNAMONTHA

Pansak Siriruchatapong, director of the National Electronics and Computer Technology Center, said the specifications of the tablets matched the price of US$81 (2,482 baht) apiece.

Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development Co (Scope) was selected on Monday by a government panel to supply 900,000 tablet computers for first-graders in primary schools.

The company offered the lowest prices among four bidders, all of them Chinese companies.

"There is nothing to worry about in terms of safety. Students may normally not be allowed to charge the battery by themselves," Mr Pansak said, adding that the tablets have six hours of battery life _ enough for use in study time.

He said there were still questions about how to best maximise tablet use among students and how to measure learning results.

Pathom Indarodom, general manager of ARIP Plc, the organiser of Commart Thailand, a computer and technology trade show, said Scope's tablet price is adequate considering the specifications. But the government should make public the content and applications that will come preloaded on the devices.

He urged the government to encourage development of educational content and mobile applications, a market which is expected to be valued at 2 billion baht this year, up from 200 million baht last year.

The Information and Communications Technology Ministry did not ask the cabinet at its meeting yesterday to approve the contract with Scope as earlier planned.

ICT Minister Anudith Nakornthap said he had decided to hold off on presenting the contract as an extraordinary agenda item that could attract criticism. He will instead propose it as a regular agenda item at next week's cabinet meeting or the week after.

A source from the Education Ministry said almost everybody on the tablet committee had preferred the units proposed by Huawei Technologies Co. But the company wanted $135 per tablet, far more than the three other bidders.

TCL Cooperation had offered to sell its tablets for $89 each and Haier Information Technology (Shenzhen) Co had offered $105.

"The committee members who visited China early this month mostly preferred Huawei's tablet PCs because of their additional functions and better look compared to the others," the source said.

All four companies' tablet PCs met the panel's specifications.

All of the tablets passed tests, such as touch screen response, battery heat and duration and a 50-cm drop test on a stone floor.

Then, delivery conditions and insurance were considered.

As the budget was too low too buy Huawei's $135 tablets, the Scope bid was considered the best choice.

"A good thing is never cheap. If you ask me, I would like to buy a Huawei-brand tablet for my child," the source said .

Education Minister Suchart Thada-Thamrongvech said the government plans to hand out tablet computers to Mathayom 1 (Grade 7) students in the next academic year.

"The ministry will provide Mathayom 1 students tablets in the next academic year 2013, or sooner," he said.

Tablets will be distributed to Prathom 1 students this year and they will be able to keep them for themselves after three years of use.

Students will be allowed to take the devices home.
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Old 11-03-2012, 09:11 AM   #153 (permalink)
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A tablet a day keeps the boredom at bay | Bangkok Post: news

A tablet a day keeps the boredom at bay

First and fourth-graders at a Bangkok school benefit from government trial programme By his own admission, 10-year-old Petch wasn't the most dedicated student in his fourth-grade class at Bangkok's Rachawinit School.


SURF AND STUDY: A student at Rachawinit School tries out the new Lenovo tablet. Rachawinit was one of five pilot schools to trial the government’s One Tablet per Child scheme. PHOTO: CHANAT KATANYU

According to his teacher Wassana Somwan, Petch had trouble concentrating in his lessons, he couldn't sit still and his writing was not as good as other students.

But all that changed when Rachawinit was chosen as one of five pilot schools to trial Lenovo computer tablets for Grade 1 and Grade 4 students under the government's One Tablet per Child scheme.

''I like the tablet,'' says Petch. ''One time, the teacher asked what our favourite region was, so I searched the southern region and read about its traditions. This was where my grandfather came from.''

''I'm more focused now, before I used to just run around the classroom, not paying attention,'' he said.

Ms Wassana only allows Petch to use the tablet if he first practises writing.

''His writing is so much better now because of it,'' she said. ''He's happy to receive compliments, to get good grades and to help other kids with their tablets.''

The computer tablets have also had a dramatic impact on Nannapath Sirpratath's first-graders.

During the 10am break, they sit quietly busying themselves with drawing and painting applications. But when the tablets are locked away for the 11am break the children run around screaming and playing.

Ms Nannapath trained for three days on how to use the tablets and has been teaching her first-graders with 40 of them for two hours a day from Jan 20.

''It's fun for me and it's fun for the students,'' she says, explaining the importance of ''fun'' as an effective way to educate seven year olds.

''The tablets help the students to learn better and also improve their behaviour.''

When Ms Nannapath talks to the class about Asean, she asks the students to search the word and read up online about the regional bloc. On Makha Bucha day she told her students to search for information about the religious holiday on their tablets.

''When there are pictures and colours, it's more fun and the students become more interested,'' she said, adding that textbooks are good, but they are outdated when compared to online content. Also, the textbooks don't have the colourful images to attract the attention of students.

Ms Wassana said that the fun, the excitement and the ''ability to travel the world'' have changed the classroom and her students.

''I asked them to search for Thai proverbs, and they found more results on the internet than in the textbooks, and with beautiful images,'' she said.

''It's a new toy for them full of wonder and excitement, so they become very excited about learning. Their parents too are excited,'' she added.

But not every student has fully embraced the tablets. When a tablet and a notebook are placed in front of six first-graders in Ms Nannapath's class and they are asked which they prefer, three students shyly choose their notebooks.

They explained quietly they believed there was more knowledge in their notebooks.

The other three first-graders, however, pointed to their tablet computers enthusiastically saying they were fun and educational.

Ms Nannapath said students take to the new technology at their own pace. Furthermore, students who have tablets or computers at home tend to embrace the new learning tools more easily than others.

The 80 students at Rachawinit are using the Lenovo tablets in this pilot project. But the 900,000 tablets to be distributed to first-graders in government schools nationwide next school year will be from China's Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development Co at a cost of US$81 (2,430 baht) apiece.

''I hope they [Scope tablets] will be good,'' said Manich Huangtong, Rachawinit School's deputy director.

''We haven't seen those tablets yet, but we have to believe they will be good. The government chose them after all.''

Mr Manich, Ms Nannapath and Ms Wassana agreed there are still uncertainties about the implementation of the One Tablet per Child scheme.

The Scope tablet comes with a two-year warranty. The Education Ministry plans to set up service centres in each province staffed by trained vocational school students.

''Other than that, I think the teachers are supposed to be able to take care of minor problems and each school should set up a team to handle repairs themselves,'' Mr Manich said.

He said the logistics of the service centres needed to be further discussed, along with Wi-Fi connectivity in classrooms. The Rachawinit pilot classrooms have four Wi-Fi spots, with 10 students assigned to each.

Ms Nannapath and Ms Wassana both said that to handle minor upkeep of the tablet computers, they will need more training. ''I really hope the scheme will work out,'' said Mr Manich. ''Especially in the provinces, as I grew up in a province myself. We all could really use this.''

Mr Manich conceded that some older teachers might struggle with using the tablets, but he expected their professionalism would prevail.

Under the scheme, students will get one tablet for use from Grade 1 through Grade 3, with the devices having a projected lifespan of three years.

Mr Manich said it depended on the government what would happen after the third year.

When asked what he would do without his tablet, Petch's eyes widened. ''I don't know,'' he said.
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Old 13-03-2012, 09:51 AM   #154 (permalink)
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Red-faced govt calls new PC bid | Bangkok Post: news

Red-faced govt calls new PC bid

Panel didn't spot Scope tablets' hidden charges
The government's plan to acquire 900,000 tablets for school pupils looks like turning into a fiasco after a panel re-opened bidding on the scheme despite having already selected a winner last week.

The move has raised suspicions of possible political interference and graft in the bidding process.

But Information and Communication Technology Minister Anudith Nakornthap denied any irregularities, saying new bids have been called because it was found the price quoted by the previously selected Chinese computer maker was not as cheap as it was thought to be.

Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development, offered a price of US$81 (about 2,400 baht) apiece which was based on free-on-board terms, meaning there can be an extra charge for the transport cost of each tablet.

As a result, Thai authorities last week decided to ask all four potential suppliers - Scope, TCL Cooperation, Haier Information Technology (Shenzhen) Co, and Huawei Technologies Co, which were recommended by the Chinese government, to resubmit their bids.

"The committee working on the tablet policy is due to open bid envelopes either today or tomorrow," said Gp Capt Anudith.


In the original bidding, Scope was selected on March 5 by a government panel to supply 900,000 tablet computers for first-graders in primary schools at the price of $81.

The other companies in the reckoning had offered to supply the tablets at higher prices. TCL offered $89, Haier offered $105 and Huawei proposed $135.

The selection of a winner this time will not be based solely on the price, but will include transportation costs, extra product specifications, after sales services, warranty, insurance costs, manufacturing capacity, supplier's credibility and other special offers, the minister said.

Gp Capt Anudith said the new bid would be based on a cost, insurance, and freight basis, which includes the cost of insurance and freight transport from China to Thailand.

Scope was considered the dark horse when it was named as the winner in the first bidding contest amid rumours that an influential figure in the ruling Pheu Thai Party preferred Huawei as the supplier.

The reopening of the bidding contest has sparked speculation the move might be politically motivated.

But Gp Capt Anudith denied this, saying politics had nothing to do with the bidding process.

He also said yMonday Huawei's first bid was simply too high.

He said the bidders might offer higher tablet specifications than those required in the new bid. Gp Capt Anudith also scoffed at rumours working the rounds on social-networking websites that Scope sells tablets on the retail market in China at only 1,000 baht a unit - less than half the price it offered the Thai government. He said Scope's retail price is actually 8,000 baht and its quote to the Thai government was a special rate under a government-to-government agreement.

The government's specifications for the tablet include requirements that it must have a seven-inch touch screen, a main storage unit of 16GB, 1GHz single core CPU or higher, 512MB RAM or higher and an Android 3.2 operating system compatible with Android 4.0.

After the new bids are opened, the ICT Ministry will propose the winning bid be sent for cabinet approval on March 20. He said the development of content in eight subjects is complete so tablet distribution would be on schedule for the next semester in May. Of the 900,000 tablets the government will purchase, 860,000 will be distributed to all of the country's Prathom 1 (Grade 1) students and the rest will be earmarked for teachers or kept in reserve.
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Old 13-03-2012, 09:56 AM   #155 (permalink)
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So the initial contract could not grease enough palms? Now they have to find a way to make a little more money off this silly proposal.
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Old 13-03-2012, 11:51 AM   #156 (permalink)
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^Well Huawei are famous for their deep pockets and willingness to buy business, and lets be honest 900000 x $46 gives you a lot of flexabiliy
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Old 14-03-2012, 09:43 AM   #157 (permalink)
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Scope picked once again to supply PCs | Bangkok Post: news

Scope picked once again to supply PCs

For a second time, Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development has been chosen as the winner of a contract to supply 900,000 tablet computers for school first-graders, after it resubmitted its bid.

Scope increased its offer price by US$1 (30.6 baht) to $82 to cover the insurance and freight charges which were not included in the first offer.

The companies were asked to resubmit their bids on a cost insurance freight (CIF) basis, which includes the price of the tablets, insurance and transport costs, both by planes and ship, from China to both Suvarnabhumi airport and Laem Chabang port. Their first bids did not include insurance and freight.The disclosure of bids yesterday by the procurement committee triggered a behind-the-scenes push by Huawei Technologies Co to reduce its offer price to $73 apiece from its first bid of $135 (it was originally the most expensive bidder).

But Huawei's renewed offer came after the committee had already opened the bid envelopes submitted by rivals Scope, TCL Cooperation and Haier Information Technology (Shenzhen) Co, a source on the procurement committee said.

The source said Scope was chosen once again to supply the tablets for the government's One Tablet per Child project.

Scope's Scopad SP0712 model for students will include a seven-inch touchscreen, a 1.2 GHz single core CPU, 1 GB RAM, a storage memory unit of 8GB and Google's Android 4.0 operating system.

The terms of reference called for tablets that include a 1 GHz CPU, 512 RAM and the Android 3.2 Honeycomb version.

Scope also offered to include a two-year warranty for its devices.

ICT Minister Anudith Nakornthap said a second panel will consider the bid results today before submitting it to the cabinet for endorsement next week.

He said asking that the companies resubmit their bids was above board. "The procurement had nothing to do with politics. During every part of the procurement process, we were required to record everything in writing and in video for transparency," he said.



Anudith: No Huawei in final round - The Nation

Anudith: No Huawei in final round

Asina Pornwasin
The Nation March 14, 2012 1:00 am


The government will make a "final" decision today on which company gets to supply tablet computers to school students nationwide, following confusion over a remark made initially by the information and communications technology minister indicating that one firm had won the bid.

The final decision will not include Huawei Technologies as one of the contenders.

ICT Minister Anudith Nakornthap claimed yesterday that he had never intimated that Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development had won the bidding. He insisted that he only pointed the company out because it was offering the lowest price compared to other firms.

However, upon a review of a reporter's recording of the interview, it appeared as if Anudith was indeed indicating that the bidding had been concluded after Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development received "the highest score". He did not say then that another round of bidding would be required, and virtually all newspapers published reports confirming Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development as the winner.

Anudith said yesterday that the computers-for-children policy committee chaired by Education Minister Suchart Tadathamrongvej would make a decision today after considering final offers from Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development and two other firms. Anudith is also a member of the committee.

The government plans to acquire 900,000 tablets for schoolchildren to fulfil an election promise. The apparent flip-flopping in relation to the bidding will certainly raise suspicions of political interference. The other firms involved in the final decision are TCL Corporation and Haier Information Technology.

The ICT minister confirmed that Huawei Technologies, which was the subject of speculation recently, has been counted out of the final bidding. Besides, Anudith said, Huawei's offered price was already too high.

In fact, he said, Huawei did not even participate in the previous round of bidding, in which Scope was declared as "scoring the highest points", while TCL Corp and Haier Information Technology tied with the same points.

Scope offered the lowest price at US$81 (Bt2,481) per tablet, while Huawei offered the tablets for $135 apiece.

"We are not annulling the bidding," Anudith said yesterday. "It was never finalised in the first place."

Apart from pricing, the decision-making committee will today consider production readiness, delivery and after-sale services. Specs will also come into play, sources told The Nation.
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Old 14-03-2012, 05:09 PM   #158 (permalink)
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Thai-ASEAN News Network - IT Firm Supports Govt's Tablet Handout

IT Firm Supports Govt's Tablet Handout

UPDATE : 14 March 2012

IT Service Provider, Advanced Information Technology, voices support to the government's policy to distribute a tablet PC to every first grader nationwide.

Meanwhile, the vice president of the Thailand Development Research Institute says the government's decision to purchase tablets from China jeopardizes the chance for Thai companies.


Advanced Information Technology, or AIT, President and CEO, Siripong Oontornpan said the government's policy to distribute a tablet PC to every first grader nationwide for educational purpose is a good idea as it will help children to learn more about technology and give them more opportunity to access the internet.

Siripong noted that the government should urgently develop a nationwide telecommunication infrastructure to benefit related industries in the future.

In the meantime, Somkiat Tangkijvanit, Vice President of the Thailand Development Research Institute, or TDRI, stated that looking at the bright side, the government's handout of tablet PCs will improve educational opportunities for Thai children. However, he noted that first graders may be too young to enjoy the full potential of the tablets.

Somkiat commented on the government's decision to purchase the tablets from China, saying it jeopardizes the chance of Thai companies, as Thai manufacturers also have the potential to produce them.

He added that AIT is collaborating with the Stock Exchange of Thailand to organize a seminar on Thailand's future and the changes in store for information technology and communications after the launch of ASEAN Economic Community.

Academics and experts from many organizations, such as Cisco Symtems, Oracle Corporation and TDRI, participated in the event held at the Stock Exchange of Thailand.
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Old 18-03-2012, 12:41 AM   #159 (permalink)
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Cabinet to mull tablet plan Tuesday - The Nation

Cabinet to mull tablet plan Tuesday

JEERAPONG PRASERTPOLKRUNG
THE NATION ON SUNDAY March 18, 2012 1:00 am


Details of the tablet-computer distribution project will be put to the mobile Cabinet meeting in Phuket for consideration on Tuesday, the prime minister's personal spokesman Suranand Vejjajiva told reporters yesterday, after a meeting with the premier.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra called a meeting yesterday with ministers and agency chiefs from the Foreign, Education, and Information and Communications Technology (ICT) ministries to check on progress of the project and discuss any obstacles. The meeting was held after the PM hosted her weekly TV programme "Yingluck Government Meets the People at Phitsanulok House", at her official residence.

Suranand said Yingluck wanted the project to be put to Cabinet for consideration as soon as possible, so the government will be able to deliver the tablets in May or June, when the next semester starts.

He said a tri-ministry panel would choose which company the government will buy the tablets from. The premier would not do that.

Suranand denied there was major disagreement over the project between the Education and ICT Ministries, only some misunderstanding after the ministries received different information. They would have to find a resolution to this and the procurement had to be done according to regulations, he said.

"The prime minister wanted the procurement to be done under a government-to-government contract (with China) in order to strengthen the relationship between both countries and prevent budget leakage. She wanted to know the quality of the tablets and how they would be used."

He said the ICT Ministry told the meeting procurement progress had been slow because it wanted to ensure the government received quality tablets at reasonable prices before giving them to students.

The spokesman insisted that Prathom 1 students (first graders) would have the tablets to use in the next academic year, barring any serious problems such as, obstacles caused by regulations at individual ministries. But the government had not found any such obstacles so far.
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Old 20-03-2012, 05:32 PM   #160 (permalink)
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Govt cancels plan to buy tablet PCs in G-to-G method
March 20, 2012

The Cabinet Tuesday allowed the Information and Communications Technology to buy tablet computers from China, using a memorandum of understanding method instead of government-to-government method.

ICT minister Anudit Nakhonthap said the G-to-G procurement method had too many red-tape procedures so he asked the Cabinet to approve the procurement in an MoU method instead.

Anudit said the government will buy the tablet computers from Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development Co. Ltd, which will be certified by the Chinese government.

He said the drafting of purchasing contract would be done before the end of the month and the contract would be checked by the Office of Attorney General.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra confirmed that her Cabinet had approved the ICT Ministry's request to make the purchase in MoU method instead of G-to-G method.

nationmultimedia.com
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Old 20-03-2012, 05:45 PM   #161 (permalink)
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One wonders who is running the company

QUOTE]http://www.scope.com.cn

With 20 years OEM/ODM service and exporting experience, SCOPE Scientific Development Co., Ltd, is one of the first companies dedicated to the display terminal products in China, specializing in the manufacture of multimedia display terminal products. In the pioneering entrepreneurial spirit of innovation and continuous improvement, SCOPE built a system of independent research and development center, it business ranges from LCD/LED TV, Tablet PC and Advertisement Player/Digital Signage, honored as one of the Top 100th Manufacturers in Baoand, Shenzhen, China, and certified as high-tech Enterprise.

SCOPE factories are located in Shajing Town, main produce TV & AD Player. and another factory main produce Tablet PC, Mobile Phone & GPS at ShiYan, total 100,000 square meters. Employs more than 1500 people, including a professional R & D team of 60 people, with numbers of patented technologies. Now we have 7 product lines, and aging assembly lines, silk-screen device and painting workshop, annual production capacity is more than 5 million units. And 10 new product lines are building, estimated annual production capacity can reach 10 million units.

We have established the first-class quality control and environmental protection systems with ISO9001 and I4001 certificate, and our products passed such domestic and international certifications and accreditations as CE, CB, CCC, FCC, ETL, CSA, SASO, SAA,C-ticK, By doing this ,we won good fame from our partners, like WALMART、 K-MART 、SEARS 、TELEFUNKEN 、AKAI、HUNYDAI 、DAEWOO and government organs, with all the advantages, SCOPE is achieved in the list of AA enterprises in Customs and China Inspection and Quarantine.

During years of development, based on "Innovation as the soul, specialization as the aim", we go forward fast and steady on the road of "do professionally, do finely, do best". Our company purpose: "take of high-tech equipment, high and new technology, effective management, quality service to contribute customers, commitment to social responsibility and mission."

| Last update:2012.03.01


Company name:Shenzhen SCOPE SCIENTIFIC DEVELOPMENT CO.,LTD
Address:The West haosi Industry Park,Shajing Town, Baoan District,Shenzhen City, GuangDong Province,China
P.C:518104
Tel:0755-27413333
Web:www.scope.com.cn
E-mail: scope@scope.com.cn

MSN: red_83172468@hotmail.com
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Old 20-03-2012, 10:30 PM   #162 (permalink)
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Hope the English in their tablets is better than that spiel.
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Old 21-03-2012, 05:50 AM   #163 (permalink)
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Still incredible there is not a word about what software will be used or who will develop it, for which class subjects or at what costs.

They're useless toys without good academic software, come to think of it, the IPAD I bought in the USA is a useless toy even with software.
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Old 21-03-2012, 02:51 PM   #164 (permalink)
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Cabinet gives green light to private tablet purchase | Bangkok Post: news

Cabinet gives green light to private tablet purchasePHUKET : The cabinet yesterday approved the purchase of 900,000 tablet computers to supply to school students under a memorandum of understanding with a private company.

The MoU replaces a previous purchasing arrangement directly involving the Chinese government.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra said after the mobile cabinet meeting in Phuket that the cabinet had originally approved the tablet procurement under a government to government contract, or G to G, with China.

As part of the G to G negotiations, the Chinese government suggested four suppliers be considered for the deal, with Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development winning the bid. The other companies were TCL Cooperation, Haier Information Technology (Shenzhen), and Huawei Technologies Co.

However, Thai authorities claimed the G to G contract would take longer to work out than an MoU with the supplier, so the government decided to deal directly with Shenzhen Scope instead.

This would ensure the tablets are delivered in time for the next semester.

Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Minister Anudith Nakornthap said China will still help ensure the tablets meet specified standards and that prices are as low as possible.

Deputy government spokesman Anusorn Iamsa-ard said Pathom 1 pupils will receive the first batch in time for the start of the next semester in May. A second batch will follow soon afterwards.

The Pheu Thai Party promised during its campaigning ahead of last year's election that, if voted in, it would give a tablet computer to every first-grade student nationwide.

Gp Cpt Anudith said the next step was to draft the agreement and forward it to the Office of the Attorney General for checks. The process would be finished before the end of this month, he said.

Chinnapat Bhumirat, secretary-general to the Office of Basic Education, said: "The G to G contract and MoU agreement are not that different, and the Chinese government will help us deal with the supplier and get as low a price as possible."

Mr Chinnapat said the first batch of about 50,000 tablets would be sent to Thailand within 15 days of the MoU being signed. A team of 1,000 experts will train 15,000 teachers and supervisors nationwide on tablet use in early May.



First tablets likely to arrive in April - The Nation

First tablets likely to arrive in April

Chularat Saengpassa,
Supinda na Mahachai
The Nation March 21, 2012 1:00 am


Chinese firm may be asked for an initial 50,000; Anudith rejects bribery claim

The Chinese supplier in the government's "One Tablet Per Child" project is expected to deliver the first batch of the 900,000 devices by the middle of next month.

Representatives of Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development, which has now been officially confirmed as the chosen supplier, will likely fly to Thailand to sign the purchase contract with the Information and Communications Technology Ministry next week.

Office of the Basic Education Commission (Obec) secretary-general Chinnapat Bhumirat yesterday said delivery of the first batch of tablets would arrive within 15 days of the contract being signed.

"It is not going to be a government-to-government purchase contract" as had been widely believed, ICT Minister Anudith Nakornthap said after coming out of yesterday's Cabinet meeting. "We will sign the contract directly with the Chinese firm."

He said the Chinese government had just notified the Thai authorities that pursuant to its laws, the Chinese firm must sign the purchase contract itself.

"We have consulted the Council of State and the Office of the Attorney-General and they have confirmed such a contract can be entered," the minister said.

He added that the purchase contract would simply be based on the memorandum of understanding inked by the two countries late last year.

Anudith said the contract would specify the exact number of tablets to be bought, the spares needed, the total cost and the number of offices the supplier would have to open in Thailand.
"It must open offices here to provide after-sales services," he said.

Chinnapat said Obec would likely ask that the first batch of tablets total 50,000 units. "During the negotiating rounds, we talked about 2,000 units in the first lot, but we may well need to increase the number," he said.

Chinnapat explained that Obec would need the devices early to train the trainers on their use before the end of April. In early May, Obec would then have to provide training to about 15,000 teachers and educational supervisors, too.

The agency chief said not all Prathom 1 students would get the devices at the start of the upcoming academic semester.

"I think the second batch will arrive when the semester has already started," he said.
"The delivery will likely be made in three big lots."

Critics have said that attempted bribery in the negotiations might have caused the delayed decision over which firm should be the supplier for the project, an allegation strongly denied by Anudith yesterday.

"They are just rumours," he said.

Shenzhen Scope's name emerged as the firm with the lowest bid on March 5, but the Cabinet only confirmed it as the supplier yesterday.

The ICT minister insisted that the procurement and selection process had been fully in line with the law.

"The panel in charge of procurement comprises senior government officials," he said. "We have got a better deal" after talking to the suppliers again.

The Chinese firm will even upload about 300 learning elements into all of the tablets, he said, adding that although the unit price remained US$81 (Bt2,495), it now also covered transport of the devices to Laem Chabang Port.

The One Tablet Per Child project is based on an election policy pledge made by the ruling Pheu Thai Party.

"The Cabinet has already approved the purchase framework," Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra said yesterday.
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Old 21-03-2012, 03:18 PM   #165 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by BobR View Post
Still incredible there is not a word about what software will be used or who will develop it, for which class subjects or at what costs.

They're useless toys without good academic software, come to think of it, the IPAD I bought in the USA is a useless toy even with software.
From what I understand the software thats being developed is being developed by a number of teams at various universities around the country.

I think its been secondary objective of the government and a primary objective of these people to create software houses that can demonstrably create educational software for tablets and create a new export industry for thailand as more countries adopt tablets in the class room.

As for why we are not seeing photos of this amassing stuff being used on these tablets, that could well be that whilst designing and building tablets has become quite trivial in recent times, software development is just as slow and painful as its always been.

As for the usefullness of tablets, its really depends upon your needs, my work requires large amounts of reference material I routinely carry about 200kg of books in electronic form on my tablet and i can see how they could be usefully used within the schools. but id they are not used for what they are good at they will be worse than useless, as this initial rollout of the tablets and the internet infrastructure is sucking over 300 million dollars out of the system that could have been spent on other things like furniture, buildings, ordinary boring teaching aids.

Last edited by hazz : 21-03-2012 at 03:33 PM.
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Old 28-03-2012, 08:20 AM   #166 (permalink)
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Tablets to be given to 7thgraders in November - The Nation

Tablets to be given to 7thgraders in November

The Nation March 28, 2012 1:00 am

In November, when the second semester of the next school years begins, around 700,000 computer tablets will be distributed to seventhgraders across the country, with cash being be provided to parents who wish to buy a preferred model, Education Minister Suchart Tadathamrongvej said yesterday.

It has not been decided if the tablet model will be the same as that to be distributed to firstgraders in the first semester next year starting in midMay, or a different model with specifications tailored to seventhgraders' instructional needs, he said.

Suchart was speaking at a seminar at the Kurusapa Business Organisation in Bangkok, at which he also proposed that college and university graduates who have not yet earned a separate teaching credential be allowed to work as teachers.

He also said that a communal server would be set up to store school lessons and relevant applications through cloud computing, while schools would be given budgets to purchase or secure additional applications of their choice.

Of the approximately 20,000 new teachers who replace teachers leaving the system each year, around 30 per cent - to be dubbed "newbreed teachers" - would be given additional training or selected from among new graduates without teaching credentials, he said.

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Old 28-03-2012, 08:58 AM   #167 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by hazz
From what I understand the software thats being developed is being developed by a number of teams at various universities around the country.
then it's going nowhere,
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Old 30-03-2012, 10:59 AM   #168 (permalink)
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Govt vows strict quality control for tablets - The Nation

Govt vows strict quality control for tablets

THE NATION March 30, 2012 1:00 am


The government is ensuring strict quality control in the production of the first batch of tablet computers for its One Tablet Per Child scheme.

"If any of the 2,000 devices contains a flaw in the main system, the whole manufacturing process must be revamped from the start," Information and Communications Technology Minister Anudith Nakornthap said yesterday.

If the flaw is minor, manufacturing for the next lots will be able to start after the change is made in line with the Thai government's requirements, he said.

An extensive quality inspection of the first 2,000 devices will be part of the contract with the Chinese supplier, Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development.

The Office of the Attorney-General will review the contract before the signing takes place soon. Within 15 days of the signing, the first batch must be delivered to Thailand.

Anudith said that by Tuesday all the agencies that would receive tablets, except the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration and the City of Pattaya, would have to transfer funds to his ministry to arrange the procurement for them.

Chinnapat Bhumirat, secretary-general of the Basic Education Commission, said his agency was allocated just Bt1.18 billion for the scheme but according the government's plan, it would have to provide tablets to all 560,000 Prathom 1 students.

"The budget we've got is enough for about 470,000 tablets only," he said.

The Budget Bureau has advised the agency to borrow some of the funds allocated for other purposes for the purchase of the difference, or 90,000 tablets.



Office faces funding shortfall for tablet PCs | Bangkok Post: news

Office faces funding shortfall for tablet PCs The Office of the Basic Education Commission said yesterday the government had failed to give it enough money to buy the tablet computers which it must supply to all Prathom 1 pupils.

Chinnapat Phumirat, secretary-general of the office, said the office had received 1.18 billion baht, which is about 360 million baht less than it needs. The shortfall may force the office to take money out of a school expense subsidy fund and its treasury reserve, as recommended by the Budget Bureau.

The 1.18 billion baht would only be enough to buy about 470,000 units, well short of the more than 560,000 Prathom 1 pupils that will be entering education in the coming school year, Mr Chinnapat said. Earlier, the panel in charge of the One Tablet Per Child policy said the office would buy one million tablets for US$82 (2,530 baht).

The tablet scheme was a major policy plank of the Pheu Thai government during last year's election.

The Ministry of Information and Communication Technology yesterday finalised the contract for the purchase of Chinese tablet computers for young Thai students and will send the draft to the Office of the Attorney-General for approval on Monday.

Minister Anudith Nakornthap said that if the office approves the contract, Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development Co will endorse it.

After the contract signing, the supplier will deliver 2,000 samples to Thai authorities for extensive testing, Mr Anudith said. The test will also cover peripherals and mostly concern technical aspects such as processing content and electric surge protection.

All the samples must pass the test and then big-lot production of the tablet computers can start. He said if the test finds any glitches, the supplier will be allowed to address them. If the test reveals critical defects with the main system of the computers, the supplier selection process will start all over again.
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Old 06-04-2012, 08:56 AM   #169 (permalink)
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Govt delays deal-signing as deadline guarantee missed - The Nation

Govt delays deal-signing as deadline guarantee missed

SIRIVISH TOOMGUM
THE NATION April 6, 2012 1:00 am


The Information and Communications Technology Ministry has delayed the signing of a contract to purchase Chinese tablet computers for Prathom 1 students until Tuesday after Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development failed to produce a guarantee from the Bank of China by yesterday.

ICT Minister Anudith Nakornthap said both sides needed to have all the required documents ready before the deal can be signed, and the Thai side was ready.

The ministry informed the Chinese supplier in the afternoon that the Office of the Attorney-General had just finished its review of the contract and asked the company to prepare the documents to complete the deal.

However, the Chinese manufacturer could not get a standby guarantee for 5 per cent of the project value by the deadline, he said.

The Bt1.9-billion project has proceeded in strict compliance with all laws and regulations, he said.

The One Tablet Per Child policy was a hallmark of the Pheu Thai Party's winning election campaign.

The ruling party has been determined to push the project through despite words of caution from many sides regarding not only the cost of the programme but the possibility that the devices will be used inappropriately.

The project will distribute 900,000 tablets from the Chinese supplier to Prathom 1 students.

All of the tablets should be delivered by July, with the first batch of about 2,000 to reach teachers early next month, he said.

He declined to give more details of the devices, pending the sealing of the deal.
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Old 06-04-2012, 11:46 AM   #170 (permalink)
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Having to have the bank guarantee before the contract signing is a bit unusual. Normally you are only required to produce the bank when submitting the first invoice and getting paid. It is a bit of a chicken and egg thing, as some companies would have difficulty in getting the guarantee without being able to show a signed contract to bank as collateral.

I wonder if this requirement, which when put into a TOR is often used to exclude disfavored bidders, is backfiring and now the favored bidder cannot actually produce it.
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Old 06-04-2012, 12:25 PM   #171 (permalink)
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I just wonder how many of these Chinese shit tablets are still operable after the first month.

Stupid people don't realize Good teaching come with quality teachers.
Not seen that here.
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Old 06-04-2012, 12:45 PM   #172 (permalink)
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I wonder if even the teachers will be able to work with these tablets....
will they have to go back to school?
get some kind of training???
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Old 06-04-2012, 01:39 PM   #173 (permalink)
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It'll probably be seen in schools as a toy that the kids can play with whilst a few of their teachers pop off for a game of golf or suchlike.
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Old 06-04-2012, 02:09 PM   #174 (permalink)
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The whole tablet scheme panders to the stupidity and naivety of the Thai rural population who believe everything can be sorted with a quick fix - whether a trip to the temple, a short term injection of cash or in this case a magic device that will give them "education".

They have no concept that attaining a higher level of education requires effort, concentration and long term application - attributes that are elusive to almost all Thais. Not to mention the presence of competent teachers.

PT benefits by appearing to be the miracle benefactor, leaving their political leadership and sponsors unmolested to share the spoils of the country's budget. In reality, being nothing more than the disinterested uncle who hands out sweets to the nieces and nephews to buy popularity. The trade off with the older, established elite being the benefit of perpetuating the ignorance of the masses, who must be prevented at all costs from questioning the status quo.

The Ministry of Information benefit if they can wean people out of internet cafes, it must be so tedious having to monitor all those IP addresses with so many users.

TD members benefit as the next generation of bar girls, boys and in betweens will be able to download applications like "Adult Friend Finder" thus saving the 300-500 baht a time bar fine cost.

The kids benefit by being able to play "Angry Birds" at home instead of staring vacantly into space whilst their relatives get pissed on Lao Kao in the evening.

The amounts of money funnelling through the hands of the administration provides all sorts of opportunities to the right people to buy a new Benz or condo and pay next year's fees at Charterhouse/Canford/Cheltenham College.

Everyone's happy and lots of opportunities to take nice pictures of smiling kids in pretty uniforms. What's not to like?

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Old 06-04-2012, 06:48 PM   #175 (permalink)
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First it was tablets would be given to all P1 students by the start of next term, May 15th.
Now " All of the tablets will be distributed by July."
I seem to recall the election promise was that "ALL students will receive tablets by the next term."
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