HP, NetSchools join in laptop deal
- By Daniel Keegan
- Jul 17, 2000
Hewlett-Packard Co. has joined with NetSchools Corp.
to offer schools the ability to provide every student with a laptop computer
connected through a wireless network.
NetSchools' product, Constellation, gives each student a laptop computer
at the start of the school year, which the student essentially borrows like
a library book until the end of the school year. The laptops, durable enough
to withstand a three- to five-foot drop onto concrete, are equipped with
an infrared device similar to a remote control that communicates with
a sensor in the ceiling of each classroom. Teachers' laptops are connected
through a local-area network. Because all students have their own portable
computers, teachers can conduct classes without having to move to a computer
NetSchools serves more than 14,000 students in 36 schools nationwide.
In the next year, the company expects to equip 20 to 30 more schools.
Under the agreement, HP will provide all the hardware for the Constellation
product. However, the company has not yet developed the unique student computers
and infrared network, which will be supplied by NetSchools until HP develops
The complete solution including computers, printers, network, servers
and other products costs about $2,000 per student, although company officials
say the price may go down.
"NetSchools has done a great job demonstrating approved academic achievement,
test scores and attendance in schools that use the one-to-one computing
environment," said Brent Boyer, e-School program manager for HP.