NZ Education Blog

Regular updates from Microsoft in the NZ education sector. Events and advice for education staff.

July, 2013

  • Explore the oceans with Skype in the classroom

    In October, Skype in the classroom is presenting a month-long celebration of our oceans. Exploring Oceans is a program of free Skype lessons, talks and live experiences, taking your students on an adventure under the sea.

    Meet the world's leading marine experts, scientists and explorers and open your classroom doors to a world of discovery. Join us for an ocean adventure your students will never forget.

    The themes that we will explore are:

    • Habitats and ecosystems
    • Conservation and sustainability
    • Impact of human activities
    • Exploration and adventure
    • Pushing scientific frontiers
    • The future of the oceans

    You can register for updates here. Don't miss out!

  • 18 Myths of Education

    Anthony Salcito, Vice President for Microsoft Education, recently blogged this fantastic infographic by informED and we just had to share it with you. It gives some fantastic insights into some common and not-so-common issues in global education.

    Tweet us at @MSNZEducation, we want to know what you think!

     

  • Microsoft NZ Education is now on Twitter!

    Microsoft NZ Education is now on Twitter! We are very excited here in the education team to be able to give you the regular updates on the education sector that you want to know about.

    We want to hear your thoughts on our news, events and advice. Don't miss out! Follow @MSNZEducation today!

  • The Surface RT offer for education institutions has been extended!

    We're very pleased to announce that the Surface RT offer for schools and tertiary education institutions (see previous blog post) has been extended until the 30th September, 2013!

    Now, between July 15, 2013 and September 30, 2013, Microsoft is pleased to offer the following special pricing on Surface RT to New Zealand schools and higher education institutions, through Authorised Surface Retailers:

    • Surface RT (32GB) - RRP1 for the Offer NZ$294 (Standard RRP1 is $499)
    • Surface RT (32GB) with Touch Keyboard Cover - RRP1 for the Offer NZ$371 (Standard RRP1 is $649)
    • Surface RT (32GB) with Type Keyboard Cover - RRP1 for the Offer NZ$432 (Standard RRP1 is $698.99)

    All the prices above include GST

    Interested in finding out more? We've put together a FAQ to ensure you have all the information you need.

    Q: Is there a minimum order requirement for the Surface RT offer? 

    No. Education institutions may buy any quantity of Surface RT for their organisation, through this special offer.

    Q: How long is the offer available? 

    This offer is available between July 15 2013 and September 30th 2013.  

    Q: How do institutions order their Surface RTs? 

    Eligible education institutions can place an order with their local participating Retail Partners (Harvey Norman, JB Hi Fi and Noel Leeming). If your institution doesn’t have an existing business relationship with these retailers the national contact information is below: 

    Q: Do I need to prove that I’m an education institution? 

    A: This offer is for eligible education institutions only. The participating Retail Partners have a list of Microsoft approved education institutions, and if the institution is on this list the order will be processed automatically.  If an institution is not on the list the Retail Partner will contact Microsoft for approval. 

    Q: I’m an individual teacher or a student – how do I buy one for myself? 

    A: This offer is only available to eligible education institutions that wish to purchase eligible Surface products for their institution’s own use, and not for resale.  

    Q: What is the warranty on the Surface RT devices? 

    A: Microsoft offers a 2 year warranty on Surface RT devices.   

    Q: Will Microsoft be providing support to schools who take part in this offer? 

    A: Customers can get help with Surface service orders, warranty information and registration at this link: https://myservice.surface.com/en-NZ/Pages/Welcome.aspx.   

    Q. Why is Microsoft making such a compelling Surface RT offer to education now? 

    A. We want this audience of educators to be able to experience the benefits of Surface first-hand. Microsoft has a long tradition of giving special pricing to resellers who sell to education customers. Microsoft’s mission in education is to help schools, students and educators realise their full potential. We do this by investing in education institutions through software, hardware and services at affordable prices. We think Surface RT is a terrific tool for teaching and learning and we want students and educators to have the best technology on the market today. 

    Q: Why does this offer include Surface RT but not Surface Pro? 

    A: Surface RT is a great tablet that lets you get stuff done and is optimised for mobile scenarios where long battery life and a thin, light form factor are critical. We want this audience of educators to be able to experience the benefits of Surface RT first-hand, including Windows RT’s enterprise ready form-factors, a reimagined application platform and a touch-first UI to enable new mobility and productivity scenarios that meet IT standards for security, manageability and support.  

    Keep up to date with Microsoft NZ's regular announcements on the education sector like this by following us on our new twitter account!

    1 This price is the recommended retail price for the offer.  Your actual price will be determined by your Surface retailer.  There is no obligation on any retailer to comply with any recommended retail prices.

  • New Zealand Microsoft Surface RT offer for Education

    You may have heard about the worldwide launch of the fantastic Microsoft Surface offer for schools and tertiary education customers. It is exclusively for education institutions, to buy Microsoft Surface RT tablets at a reduced price for a limited time.  We’re excited to announce that this offer is now available in New Zealand, for a limited time only. 

    Between July 15, 2013 and August 31, 2013, Microsoft is pleased to offer the following special pricing on Surface RT to New Zealand schools and higher education institutions, through Authorised Surface Retailers:

    • Surface RT (32GB) - RRP1 for the Offer NZ$294 (Standard RRP1 is $499)
    • Surface RT (32GB) with Touch Keyboard Cover - RRP1 for the Offer NZ$371 (Standard RRP1 is $649)
    • Surface RT (32GB) with Type Keyboard Cover - RRP1 for the Offer NZ$432 (Standard RRP1 is $698.99)

    All the prices above include GST

    Microsoft Surface RT is a great choice for schools and higher education institutions that want powerful, affordable touch-enabled tablets for students, educators and staff. In addition to cutting edge hardware specs, Surface RT comes with many software and cloud features that will have educators and students teaching and learning in no time.

    Here are just a few of the fantastic features of the Surface RT:

    • Versatile hardware. The HD display makes Surface RT ideal for reading digital textbooks and watching instructional videos. With a sturdy, built-in Kickstand, Surface RT can become more than a great tablet. The rear camera is angled, so students can record lectures when Surface is resting on a desk or table. Click in an attachable keyboard/cover and Surface RT lets students and educators work like they would on a laptop.
    • Microsoft Office built-in. Included with Surface RT is Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 RT, providing students and educators with the productivity tools they use most – Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and OneNote – all optimised for a touch screen2. Students can write reports, crunch numbers, take notes and present their findings with Surface RT—without having to install additional software. And with the upcoming free Windows RT 8.1 update, Outlook 2013 RT will be included for email, calendar, tasks and more.
    • Classroom in the Cloud. With Office 365 for Education and SkyDrive3, your school can extend the classroom into the cloud. Students and educators can collaborate in real time on homework, host virtual classes and tutoring sessions, store and share documents. Surface RT is the perfect tool for connecting to the virtual classroom from home and from school.
    • Educational apps. The Microsoft Surface offer for schools also opens the door to thousands — more than 20,000, to be precise — of education related apps in the Windows Store, from big names like Khan Academy, Kno, Chegg, and major textbook publishers such as HMH and Pearson.

    Microsoft believes every student and teacher deserves a fair opportunity to reach their full potential, and this means ensuring our education customers have access to affordable and high quality tablets with laptop functionality ready for education. Surface RT is a terrific tool for teaching and learning and we want students and educators to have the best technology on the market today.

    For more information on this limited time offer, please contact your Authorised Surface Retailer:

    1 This price is the recommended retail price for the offer.  Your actual price will be determined by your Surface retailer.  There is no obligation on any retailer to comply with any recommended retail prices.

    2 Some features and programs unsupported. See http://office.com/officeRT.  

    3 Office 365 for Education (A2) version and SkyDrive are free, requires activation from Microsoft and ISP fees for download may apply.

  • Te reo Māori choice for Windows 8, Office 2013, and the Internet

    In preparation for Māori Language Week 2013, Microsoft has announced that the choice to use te reo Māori in Windows 8, Office 2013, Outlook.com, and Internet Explorer 10 is available now.

    "We are thrilled to continue our support for te reo Maori," says Paul Muckleston, Managing Director of Microsoft New Zealand Limited. "We are grateful for the hard work that so many people have done to make it possible to weave this taonga into the very latest of tablet, smartphone, PC, and cloud technologies."

    "We are also announcing our support for a new initiative that can bring free te reo Maori translations to the Internet with the Microsoft Translator Hub in the future," says Muckleston.

    Glenis Philip-Barbara, Chief Executive of Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Maori, adds that support for te reo Māori in technology is essential for investing in tamariki by offering an interface from their school years. This allows youth to be immersed in te reo for life. 

    New support for te reo Māori in Microsoft products includes the following:

    • In Windows 8, te reo Māori can be applied to the desktop and the modern touch-friendly interface, as well as the included apps for Mail, Calendar, People, Weather, Maps, Games, Music, Finance, News, Defender (the included free anti-virus software) and more. 
    • The new Internet Explorer 10 web browser for Windows 7 and Windows 8 can also be used with te reo Māori menus and options. 
    • With Office 2013, te reo Māori can be applied to Outlook 2013, Word 2013, Excel 2013, PowerPoint 2013, and OneNote 2013. The free online email service Outlook.com also has the option to be used in te reo Māori.
    • Windows Phone 8 now offers te reo Māori support for the Regional Settings (this will display things like the time and date in te reo Māori).

    All of these te reo Māori options are available today at no extra cost, through a simple change in the Language Settings (Windows 8 and Internet Explorer 10, Outlook.com, and Windows Phone 8), or with a free download (Office 2013 from http://aka.ms/Office2013inTeReo). You can see screenshots of how it looks once the language packs are installed here: http://sdrv.ms/14aZVLE.

    Read Waldo Kuipers’, Corporate Affairs Manager at Microsoft New Zealand Limited, full article about the te reo Māori choice for Windows 8, Office 2013, and the Internet here.