Help needed choosing Windows Tablets for teachers
I know the pros and cons of RT versus full Windows 8 on tablets has been discussed on various threads already but I'm still in a quandary as to which ones would be best for what we need.
I need to purchase 2 tablets for our DT dept. The budget is only around £300 each.
They are primarily for the teachers to use as remote devices within the classrooms so they can access Excel marksheets and use the camera/video to record evidence of learning. They also want to utilise them as basic visualisers using 'in-house' designed stands (they are the Design Technology Dept. after all and do love their laser cutter!) so being able to send the images directly to their Smartboards is high on their list of priorities. Ideally they would also like to be able to 'beam' images of pupils work direct from the tablet to the Smartboard without having to attach the tablet to a cable and use the Smartboard remotely.
They also need expandable storage, ideally USB. Bluetooth would be a nice option in case they want (or need to add) keyboards afterwards as I know most of the tablets in this price range don't come with them and are pretty pricey. They also want to be able to access their Dropbox accounts directly instead of having to go online (at the moment they can only have one Dropbox account on their primary machine so when they move classrooms they have to go to DpBx online which does sort of defeat the object of it in the first place.
We use Windows 7 in school and have remote desktop facilities. We also have WIFI throughout the school. They would need to have access to their networked home folders and shared drives.
Apologises if any of that is in total numpty-speak but my expertise is in software and VLEs not hardware and networking! (can you tell! :o )
Both staff own iPads but know that they don't want them because accessing the network and their Office docs seamlessly is impossible, plus the lack of expandable storage makes them more trouble than they are worth.
I originally was looking at the Surface RT as they don't really want to add extra software or apps other than already previously mentioned but comments on some of the other threads have made me a bit wary of these, particularly in respect of connecting them to our network and of using them as remote devices with the Smartboard.
Have since looked at reviews for the Transformer T100 but was put off by the quality of the cameras; the VivoTab Smart - supposed to be sluggish and has no USB connection and the Toshiba Encore - just got really bad reviews.
Would welcome any advice or suggestions..