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Netbooks, PDA and Phones Thread, Using iPads for multiple users in groups. in Technical; I know the iPad is primerily designed as an personal device, but in their wisdom management here have stated they ...
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    maniac's Avatar
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    Using iPads for multiple users in groups.

    I know the iPad is primerily designed as an personal device, but in their wisdom management here have stated they want groups of iPads availble to sudents akin to how we have groups of laptops in cabinets now.

    So my questions are:

    a) Are there any schools doing this already that can advise me on the best way of managing iPads in this situation.
    b) Can I come and visit someone using iPads in this way (if anyone is doing so) preferably in the Kent area.
    c) any other comments people might have.

    Forget trying to talk management out of this decision, this is what they want so I've got to work with it as best I can. I can see it being a nitemate before we've even started, so I need to come up with a stategy of managing them and using them effectively.

    regards,

    Mike.

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    As long as management realise that no work can be saved onto the iPad, and that it can't be used for coursework, or anything that will stretch across multiple lessons, then it should be fine. I was asked by our music teacher whether this was a possibility. Once I mentioned that any year 11 coursework saved in garageband would be at the mercy of a year 7 student who used it, she rapidly cooled on the idea.

    Is there anyway you could get them to hold off until the Microsoft Surface is released? Whilst completely untested and new, it would at least have the benefit of being able to link to an Active Directory...

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    Quote Originally Posted by simpsonj View Post
    As long as management realise that no work can be saved onto the iPad, and that it can't be used for coursework, or anything that will stretch across multiple lessons, then it should be fine. I was asked by our music teacher whether this was a possibility. Once I mentioned that any year 11 coursework saved in garageband would be at the mercy of a year 7 student who used it, she rapidly cooled on the idea.

    Is there anyway you could get them to hold off until the Microsoft Surface is released? Whilst completely untested and new, it would at least have the benefit of being able to link to an Active Directory...
    See if you can get a hold of a demo x86 tablet and chuck W8 CTP on it, thats what we did here and they were suitably happy with the possibilities that it provided.

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    Quote Originally Posted by simpsonj View Post
    Is there anyway you could get them to hold off until the Microsoft Surface is released? Whilst completely untested and new, it would at least have the benefit of being able to link to an Active Directory...
    Sadly no, this is for September and the order for the hardware is already placed - 200 of them - don't ask. I already know the pitfalls, and things like the inability to save work to a network location have been stressed more than once, there are also issues over internet access and accountability, the fact we can't seem to prevent them putting a pin lock on the device (unless anyone knows different?) and loads of other problems, some of which we have found solutions to, and others we have not.

    I however just need to come up with a stategy of managing and using the devices in the best way possible in this scinario as the decision to have the equipment has already been made, which is why I ask the question as to if anyone else is doing this on a largeish scale, and if so if we could come and visit you and get some tips.
    Last edited by maniac; 3rd July 2012 at 06:34 PM.

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    Can't help with that, there may be third party managment software about that could help. One of my suppliers was talking about an imaging solution so you have one iPad then image them all off that 'backup'. Probably not fully complient with Apples liscencing but they are not overly helpful to start with.

    I have not had to deal with it myself as I have made it clear that if they buy iPads I walk. I have said their managment tools are not up to what they want them to do and will not be pulled into a situation where I am the bad guy for nat being able to make something work in a way it is not supposed to.

    This may help iPad deployment: Backup/restore deployment strategy and steps but I'd be ripping on their decision at every opertunity.

    There is also this kind of thing:
    http://www.mobileiron.com/en/multi-o...os-management/
    http://www.zenprise.com/solutions/ipad-management

    more money but thats the Apple story so they can just deal with it and smile.
    Last edited by SYNACK; 3rd July 2012 at 06:46 PM.

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    Thanks for your help Synack.

    Quote Originally Posted by SYNACK View Post
    I have said their managment tools are not up to what they want them to do and will not be pulled into a situation where I am the bad guy for nat being able to make something work in a way it is not supposed to.
    I feel the same way. I don't think they realise the enormous pressure I feel under to make this work now as it'll all fall on my shoulders if it doesn't, even though it wasn't my decision to have them in the first place! Never mind, I can only do my best.

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    With that amount of money wasted on iPads I'd be looking at some form of Mobile Device Management (MDM) software

    Meraki do a free offering, but there are paid for versions from the likes of Mobile iron and Airwatch.

    We have the Airwatch version to manage ours (the Meraki one wasn't out at the time) but we haven't really used it much yet, saying that we only have about 50 or so anyway which are not used a lot (like we said would be the case )

    Good luck and just think of all the fun things you could have spent the money on that would of been some use

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    Quote Originally Posted by maniac View Post
    I know the iPad is primerily designed as an personal device, but in their wisdom management here have stated they want groups of iPads availble to sudents akin to how we have groups of laptops in cabinets now.

    So my questions are:

    a) Are there any schools doing this already that can advise me on the best way of managing iPads in this situation.
    b) Can I come and visit someone using iPads in this way (if anyone is doing so) preferably in the Kent area.
    c) any other comments people might have.

    Forget trying to talk management out of this decision, this is what they want so I've got to work with it as best I can. I can see it being a nitemate before we've even started, so I need to come up with a stategy of managing them and using them effectively.

    regards,

    Mike.
    not sure MDM is going to be as effective (definitely not as cost effective) as getting management to invest in some usb sync solutions.

    It's a must if they insist on going down the shared group device route. Once you've got what you need from a hardware perspective, start off by using
    Apple configurator for iOS upgrades and applying wifi profiles.

    Apple configurator app deployment seems to work ok for deploying free apps. You'd be surprised how far you can get with managing shared devices that way. That's assuming you can dedicate one or macs to the role of managing groups of devices.
    Last edited by alttab; 3rd July 2012 at 09:26 PM.

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    On the internet access and accountability side of things, I would advise that you do not install Opera onto the iPads, or allow it to be installed. I know it bypasses my web filtering (Netsweeper), and I think there's a thread around which shows it bypasses a lot of others too.

    Otherwise good luck! Sounds like a mighty challenge to me...

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    JMB
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    Quote Originally Posted by simpsonj View Post
    As long as management realise that no work can be saved onto the iPad, and that it can't be used for coursework
    No true - I use Pages and Keynote here, and any documents created in them are saved to the iPad and automagically synched to iCloud if you need to ciphen them off to use elsewhere. Also, most (decent) apps will let you export your creations to the Camera Roll, for images or videos, or else to iCloud, Drop Box, etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JMB View Post
    No true - I use Pages and Keynote here, and any documents created in them are saved to the iPad and automagically synched to iCloud if you need to ciphen them off to use elsewhere. Also, most (decent) apps will let you export your creations to the Camera Roll, for images or videos, or else to iCloud, Drop Box, etc.
    Perhaps I should qualify my statement to say that it can't be done easily or seemlessly. From what I understand, you would need to set up a dropbox (or similar) account for each laptop (so 200 dropbox accounts), or would there be a single dropbox account for all iPads? Then when any work of importance is done, the teacher would need to move the files from the dropbox account into a folder on their computer that is stored on the school servers. Then when work is needed, the files would need to be moved back into the dropbox folder for students to continue working on. Would that be correct?

    I'm not sure how many teachers would be prepared to do that, or for how long, especially if these are going to be used as laptop trollies. At the very least, a fair amount of training is going to be required!

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    JMB
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    If each student has their own iPad (lucky them - we have to share one per class), why not create a Dropbox account for them all - this is something many of them could possibly do for themselves in an IT lesson - and locate that Dropbox folder in their documents share on the server. Then anything they save to Dropbox will be in their documents on the server anyway. Plus they can access those documents from home as well, should they feel so inclined.

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    That would be a good solution JMB, however from what I understand it's 200 roaming iPads, that can be booked like a laptop trolley and will be used in different classes across the school, and not assigned to individual students.

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    I've not managed to locate my dropbox folder on the network media as it doesn't like it!

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    JMB
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    Yes - that is indeed a pickle! Perhaps I could take those 200 iPads off your hands while I ponder a solution...?



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