SMART unveiled a new multitouch computer today, targeted at kids in the elementary to lower middle school levels. Called, originally enough, the SMART Table, its creed entices children to “Touch. Learn. Together.”
While I’m sure that it’s a quality piece of technology, the price is certainly a sticking point. With rumors of Microsoft gearing the Surface technology down for widespread consumer launch at a $1500 price point, it’s difficult to recommend that educators go out and spend SEVEN THOUSAND DOLLARS or more on this.
I just hope it’s sturdy enough to hold up to, well, elementary school kids. Seven grand is a lot to blow on something that could be easily broken, especially for cash-strapped school districts. It sounds as if the units themselves are heavily locked down; modifying or switching applications will be done via interface software installed on a teacher’s PC. Alternatively, they can flash settings to a flash drive and load them onto the SMART Table from there.