We’ve all been following the Tablet PC story out of Virginia Tech for several months with much interest. According to this new report from CollegiateTimes.com, it appears as if the implementation of Tablet PCs has been a bit of a bumpy road in regards to the technical support of the Tablet PCs and where students can actually buy them.
The department selected Fujitsu as their partner based on a consideration of over twenty different criteria. This includes processor speed, available options, price, warranty, service record, availability of spares, national benchmarks, battery life, weight, reliability, past experience, ease of purchase, screen size and delivery availability. “CDW-G has been handling our online purchasing,” said Eric Hollandsworth, a Fujitsu representative. “They say they’ve been swamped with (Tech) orders.”
To provide support for the new computers, technicians have been trained to provide first-level hardware service on campus and to be available to support student machines. Fujitsu staff will be available to service student needs, courtesy of their on-call warranty program. “The bookstore will be offering support as well,” said Hollandsworth.
A University Bookstore representative said the College of Engineering’s decision to work with Fujitsu came as a surprise. “We went out and got manufacturers to submit bids … the engineering department’s announcement was a surprise,” said the representative, who wished to remain anonymous. “Nobody told us it was coming.”
Although the reporter states that the reception to the Tablet PC requirement for all incoming Freshman to the College of Engineering has been mixed and that many students are enthusiastic about them, all they offer are negative quotes from students. That isn’t very balanced coverage if you ask me.
There is a bit of good news toward the bottom of the article, though. Apparently, the College of Business at Virginia Tech is also recommending Tablet PCs to their students, but they are not making it a requirement.