Introducing the Apple Classroom Essential Bundle

Introducing the Apple Classroom Essential Bundle

We pride ourselves in delivering the very best from Apple to schools up and down the UK. Designed with teaching and learning in mind, the Apple Classroom Essential Bundle provides schools with affordable, but utterly impactful educational tools. 

We’ve been providing high-quality services and solutions to educational institutions for 24 years, so we know what you need to make your classroom a more productive learning environment. The Apple Classroom Essential Bundle is designed to support your high standard of education, packing the kit you’ll need to get the best from your students and curriculum. The bundle includes:

– 30x iPad mini 2.

– 30x rugged cases.

– A large Lock’n’Charge Carrier with capacity for 30 iPad.

– Three-year warranty.

Optional extras can include:

– Mac mini caching server.

– 30x one year licences for Lightspeed Mobile Device Management.

– 1x day installation for configuration of caching server and Lightspeed.

– 3.5 days’ bespoke CPD training.

We offer special pricing on all Apple technology for education – we won’t be beaten on price, it won’t break your budget and we return quotes fast! Our knowledge of creative technology allows us to give expert advice on creative educational solutions, ensuring you’ll be making the best use of your new tools for years to come.

If you’d like to know more about our Apple Essential Classroom Bundle, call 03332 409 290, email education@Jigsaw24.com, ‘like’ us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @Jigsaw24Edu

 

Buyers’ Guide 2016: iPad for Creatives

Buyers’ Guide 2016: iPad for Creatives

An ever-popular choice among consumers, iPad is now also rapidly becoming a mainstay of the creative sector. With the launch of iPad Pro in November, Apple completed an impressive lineup of three tablet devices all designed to cater for different users and purposes. 

Each version comes with your classic iPad essentials – Retina display, a FaceTime HD camera on the front, an iSight camera on the other, a huge database of must-have apps, and a stylish design. When it comes to their creative application, the iPad family are capable of delivering high-quality design-oriented apps, support an array of picture editing apps, and, in the case of iPad Pro, allow for 4K video editing.

With each iPad packing a different set of specs, it’s important to consider which one is right for you and your work. Screen size, processing power, storage and overall performance all differ slightly between models, so take a look below to help you make the right decision.

iPad Pro

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The 12.9″ iPad Pro delivers Apple’s largest-ever Retina display, providing wide, open workspaces on any design app. Working in conjunction with the Apple Pencil (which iPad Pro scans 240 times a second to provide a seamless, lag-free experience), iPad Pro allows its users to scribble, sketch and draw to their hearts’ content using popular Adobe mobile apps like Sketch, Draw and Comp. Similarly, iPad Pro makes an ideal partner for other Adobe favourites on iPad – Photoshop Express and Lightroom among others.

Its expansive display acts as an excellent creative space, displaying every detail and colour in crystal clear high-definition – perfect for editing 4K video. iPad Pro’s screen not only provides vibrant colour and exquisite detail, it’s big, meaning extra keyboard space (great for avoiding those pesky typos and bumbling autocorrect errors) and a cleaner, clearer looking UI. If you’d prefer to work with a physical keyboard, take a look at the Smart Keyboard. Designed specifically for iPad Pro, this unique keyboard-case is both durable and lightweight.

iPad Pro is designed with quick, on-the-go creativity in mind, providing strong graphics performance and rapid functionality thanks to its A9X processor. It gives you a creative experience on a larger scale than its iPad siblings, one that many creatives won’t want to miss.

The specs:

– 32GB or 128GB capacity (WiFi only), 128GB (WiFi and cellular).

– 12.9″ 2732×2048 resolution display.

– A9X chip with 64-bit architecture (2.5x faster than A7 chip with 5x faster graphics).

– 8MP iSight camera and 1.2MP FaceTime camera with 720p HD video.

– Touch ID.

– Apple Pay.

– Available in silver, gold and space grey.

Prices start from £547 ex VAT.

iPad Air

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With a slimmer, sleeker, more compact build, the iPad Air gives greater portability, making it perfectly suited to viewing content on the move and using your favourite apps to design and create. iPad Air shines when used for presentations, streaming and administration, which is an essential part of almost any work in the creative sector. The lightweight aluminium body weighs in at just 444 grams and packs a 9.7″ display, matching that of the original iPad. Despite its slender design, iPad Air is incredibly durable, exactly what you want for a device that’s constantly on the move.

If you’re after the hottest, most up-to-date tech, it’s worth considering an investment in iPad Air 2 as opposed to the original. iPad Air 2 comes with a number of improvements over its predecessor – a faster processing chip, the A8X as opposed to the A7 (which would improve editing and design performance), Touch ID security technology, and larger storage capabilities (up to 32GB in the original model, and up to 128GB in the iPad Air 2), preferable if you’re storing a large amount of work on the device.

The specs:

iPad Air 2

– 16GB, 64GB and 128GB capacities (WiFi only or WiFi and cellular).

– 9.7″ 2048×1536 resolution display.

– A8X chip with 64-bit architecture (1.4x faster than A7 chip with 2.5x faster graphics).

– 8MP iSight camera and 1.2MP FaceTime camera with 720p HD video.

– Touch ID.

– Available in silver, gold and space grey.

– Prices start from £295 ex VAT.

iPad Air

– 16GB or 32GB capacity in WiFi or WiFi and cellular.

– 9.7″ 2048×1536 resolution display.

– A7 chip with 64-bit architecture.

– 8MP iSight camera and 1.2MP FaceTime camera with 720p HD video.

– Available in silver and space grey.

– Prices start from £320 ex VAT.

iPad mini

ipad_mini_4

iPad mini offers a smaller, more portable form than its counterparts, but retains many of their core features, meaning you’ll get a familiar and reliable Apple iPad experience. While it does lack the content creation capabilities of the other two iPad, it’s important to remember the benefits of a small, portable, yet technologically sound tablet device. The mini works great as a digital notebook, ideal for sketches, document management, quick photo and video capturing (thanks to two high-quality cameras), and notes. Think of iPad mini as a handy little companion to your desktop machine back at the studio.

At 6.1mm thick and equipped with a 7.9″ screen, iPad mini is possibly a little smaller than some users may like. Despite this, the lower asking price of iPad mini is worth a thought if you’re looking for a more cost- effective way to view, share and store your creative content on the go.

The specs:

iPad mini 4

– 16GB, 64GB or 128GB capacity (WiFi only or WiFi and cellular).

– 7.9″ 2048×1536 resolution display.

– A8 chip.

– 8MP iSight camera and 1.2MP FaceTime camera with 720p HD video.

– Apple Pay.

– Touch ID.

– Available in silver, gold and space grey.

– Prices start from £261.50 ex VAT.

iPad mini 2

– 16GB or 32GB capacity (WiFi only or WiFi and cellular).

– 7.9″ 2048×1536 resolution display.

– A7 processor.

– 8MP iSight camera and 1.2MP FaceTime camera with 720p HD video.

– Available in silver and space grey.

– Prices start from £179.50 ex VAT.

Want to know more about iPad? See the full range here or get in touch with our team by calling them on 03332 409 306 or email sales@Jigsaw24.com.


Apple annual roundup 2015: All the news and highlights from Cupertino

Apple annual roundup 2015: All the news and highlights from Cupertino

Apple’s hardware and OS refreshes for Mac, iPad and iPhone have become highly-anticipated annual events. You could say this was an even more landmark year than usual though, with the 12″ MacBook, iPad Pro, a long-awaited new Apple TV, plus brand new ventures into the world of wearables and music streaming in the form of Apple Watch and Apple Music.

MacBook and more

While it was all quiet on the Mac Pro front this year, all eyes were on new Mac on the block, the 12″ MacBook, in March 2015. Thinner and lighter than MacBook Air, it features a brand new faster Intel Core M processor, up to 8GB of RAM, up to 512GB of flash storage and a swanky 2304×1440 resolution Retina display. It also features a new edge-to-edge keyboard design, a Force Touch trackpad and sports just one USB type-C port and a headphone jack. Oh, and it was also the first MacBook model to be available in gold, which is great if you need your notebook to match your neckwear.

As well as the new 12″ MacBook, the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro also got a refresh at the Spring Forward event. With new fifth-gen Intel processors giving a significant speed boost, a Retina display, and more efficient storage architecture, the 13″ MacBook Pro now also features Apple’s latest Force Touch TrackPad too, as announced on the 12″ MacBook.

There was good news for iMac users in 2015 too. As well as getting bumped up to Retina 4K display with 4096 x 2304 resolution, the new 21.5″ models also feature new colour display technology that widens their colour gamut by 25% and include Intel’s Broadwell processors.

Buyers’ Guide 2015: Mac for Business

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iPad updates

On to September’s Hey Siri event, which focuses on mobile devices, and there was a whole raft of new iOS goodness. Analysts and Apple fans had been predicting this was the event that Tim Cook would unveil a new, bigger iPad Pro, and they weren’t disappointed. The largest iPad to date, iPad Pro features a stunning 12.9″ Retina display, 5.6 million pixels, the latest iOS and new 64-bit A9X chip, giving it enough power to rival most portable PCs.

iPad mini also got a face lift, with a new 18% thinner (at just 6.1mm) profile, and slightly lighter, and is powered by a new A8 processor chip, finally bringing it in line with the power of iPad Air.

What’s the verdict on iPad Pro?

– Apple announce new iPad Pro and iPad mini 4

Buyers Guide 2015: iPad for Business

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iPhone 6s and 6s Plus

It didn’t take Nostradamus to predict that Apple may continue their run of annual iPhone refreshes at the Hey Siri event in September and, true to form, they unveiled iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, while discontinuing the colourful iPhone 5c. As Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, said at the time:

“The only thing that has changed with iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus is everything – 3D Touch lets users interact with iPhone in entirely new and fun ways, and the innovative Live Photos brings your pictures to life. These are the most advanced iPhones ever, with 7000 series aluminum, ion-strengthened glass, the new 64-bit A9 chip, 12 megapixel iSight and 5 megapixel FaceTime HD cameras, faster Touch ID, LTE and Wi-Fi. Customers are going to love them.”

Buyers’ Guide 2015: iPhone for Business

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OS X El Capitan and iOS 9

Back at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June 2015, the assembled crowds of devs were treated to first glimpses of both the new Mac operating system, OS X 10.11 El Capitan, and Apple’s mobile OS for iPad and iPhone, iOS 9.

The focus of OS X 10.11 El Capitan was really on user experience, with new gestures, improvements to Safari and a new, more powerful Spotlight. A few of the new features we’ve found most useful in El Capitan have been: being able to shake your mouse or a finger on the trackpad to locate your cursor; Split View in full-screen mode; being able to pin tabs in Safari; swiping to delete messages in Mail and muting individual tabs in Safari.

iOS 9 meanwhile, saw Siri become 40% more accurate and 40% faster, with new additions like starting your music player when you plug in your headphones, adding invitations to your calendar automatically, and advising you on the time it will take to get to a meeting based on realtime traffic info. She can even suggest who a caller might be by trawling your email for phone numbers hidden in email signatures. Other highlights included Apple Pay, meaning you can now pay for a coffee with your iPhone, better battery life, the News app replacing Newsstand, and more.

Apple TV

It had been three years since Apple updated their standalone set-top box, so Apple TV was well due an upgrade when the all new model was announced in November 2015. Apple TV now has its very own App Store (which, as of December 2015, features BBC iPlayer, which is very welcome news for anyone in the UK), plus a brand new touchpad remote with Siri integration. There’s now support for games too, using the touchpad remote as a game controller. You can also pick up a very fetching Wii-style optional strap for more active gaming, or serious gamers can opt for a third-party MFi game controller.

Apple launch next generation Apple TV

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And the rest…

Earlier in the year, health, fitness and fashion freaks welcomed Apple Watch with open arms. Apple’s first wearable let users track fitness, receive notifications, messages and mail directly from their wrist, and came with a number of different options (we’re still holding out for an Apple Watch Edition from a very loving relative this Christmas). It then got an update to its operating system at WWDC, watchOS 2, which was paired with WatchKit, a set of tools allowing developers access to hardware and software to create native Apple Watch apps.

The same conference also saw Apple unveil a new music streaming service, Apple Music. As well as listening to your own iTunes library, you can stream any of the 30 million songs Apple has access to, or listen to carefully curated playlists based on your tastes.

Anything we missed that was top of your Apple list in 2015? Anything you’d like to see from Apple in 2016? Let us know in the comments below… 

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email sales@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news and reviews, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Buyers’ Guide: iPad for business

Buyers’ Guide: iPad for business

With nearly half of all iPad now being sold to corporations rather than consumers, the odds that you’re going to end up working with an iPad at one time or another are pretty steep. 

Luckily, they’re user-friendly, great for increasing mobile productivity and, increasingly, are capable of running the vast majority of apps you already use on your desktop or notebook. With that in mind, it’s time to arm yourself with some key specs that’ll help you work out which iPad is right for your line of work.

While the basics of iPad remain the same – Retina display, iSight camera for photo and video on one side, FaceTime HD camera for video calls (and conferences) on the other, industry-leading platform, device and app-level security – there are subtle differences between models, such as screen size, storage capacity and whether they are available in gold, that can make all the difference.

iPad Pro

ipad_pro

iPad Pro is the creative user’s tablet of choice thanks to its leading graphics performance, but with analysts predicting that large format tablets will be ruling the workplace by 2019, it’s well worth getting to grips with iPad Pro in enterprise environments too.

But whether to opt for the larger 12.9″ model, or the more recent 9.7″ one? Well, if you regularly have to use your iPad as a presentation device, the three inches of extra screen space can provide some much-needed breathing room for your pitch content, especially if you deal with incredibly detailed models or documents. And while that faster A9X processor is designed to give more power to your creative apps, it’ll work equally well as a way to speed up data-driven work, so if you want to fly through analytics analysis (and then have plenty of space to show off your results) iPad Pro is the way to go.

That larger screen also means you get a bigger keyboard, should typing on your regular screen leave you drowning in a sea of typos and humiliating autocorrect errors, or you can add a Smart Keyboard, a lightweight, full-size keyboard that is built into an iPad Pro cover, meaning it’s there whenever you need it. Just fold back the cover, lean back your iPad (the non-keyboard portion of the cover folds into a stand) and you can set your iPad Pro up like a desktop or notebook for easier multitasking.

You can also add an Apple Pencil if you want to do slightly more detailed drawing than your finger can manage, or take notes. The iPad Pro scans for Pencil activity 240 times a second, meaning there’s no lag between your hand moving and your drawing appearing on the screen, and we’ve yet to hear of any reviewer managing to defeat the palm rejection technology. It’s also pretty quick to charge – 15 seconds of charge via your iPad Pro’s Lightning port gives you enough power for 30 minutes of use.

Best for: Architects, designers, onsite contractors – anything where you need to deal with high-res, detail-heavy imagery.

iPad Pro 12.9″

– 32GB or 128GB capacity (WiFi only), 128GB (WiFi and cellular).

– 12.9″ 2732×2048 resolution display.

– A9X chip with 64-bit architecture (2.5x faster than A7 chip with 5x faster graphics).

– 12MP iSight camera with 4K video recording and 1.2MP FaceTime camera with 720p HD video.

– Touch ID.

– Apple Pay.

– Available in silver, gold and space grey from November.

Prices start from £585 ex VAT.

iPad Pro 9.7″

– 32GB,  128GB and 256GB capacity.

– 9.7″2048×1536 resolution display.

– A9X chip with 64-bit architecture and M9 motion co-processor.

– 12MP iSight camera with 4K video recording and 1.2MP FaceTime camera with 720p HD video.

– Touch ID.

– Apple Pay.

– Available in silver, gold and space grey from November.

Prices start from £441 ex VAT

iPad Air 2

ipad_air_2

Keeping the screen size of the original iPad but squeezing the internals into a tiny 444 gram machined aluminium body, iPad Air 2 is an excellent compromise between screen size and portability. (We particularly like it for any roles where you need to combine typing and form-filling admin work with visual documentation, because it’s easier to handle than the Pro, but still retains the same pair of high quality cameras.)

While workers in some sectors are reporting that iPad is taking over from their desktop and notebook computers, there are plenty of tools available to help you use it as a second screen or presentation device – we highly recommend pairing it with Apple TV in your boardroom as a replacement for ageing projector setups.

iPad Air 2 has a greater internal memory than the original iPad Air, which tapped out at 32GB, which makes this form factor viable even if you’re toting larger apps or bigger files. This also allows you to work in Split Screen mode, which means you can use more than one app at once side-by-side – watch a video while reading something in Safari or dig information out of your email while typing into a document, for example.

iPad Air 2 also comes with Touch ID, Apple’s biometric security measure, to ensure no one can sneak onto your iPad without your index fingerprint. So if you’re saving ultra-important files locally or have business secrets in your email inbox, opt for the newer model.

Best for: Retail – a flexible solution for POS displays, kiosks, ePOS and face to face sales.

iPad Air 2

– 32GB and 128GB capacities (WiFi only or WiFi and cellular).

– 9.7″ 2048×1536 resolution display.

– A8X chip with 64-bit architecture (1.4x faster than A7 chip with 2.5x faster graphics).

– 8MP iSight camera and 1.2MP FaceTime camera with 720p HD video.

– Touch ID.

– Available in silver, gold and space grey.

Prices start from £304 ex VAT.

 

iPad mini

ipad_mini_4

If you need something even more portable, go for the ultra-light 7.9″ iPad mini. Despite not being much bigger than your phone, it still manages to be higher resolution than an HD TV, and iPad mini 4 even manages to fit in Touch ID for biometric security authentication and supports Split Screen view for working in multiple apps side-by-side.

We like iPad mini for fieldwork such as repairs or surveying, as it has all the document and data management capabilities of its larger counterparts, but is slim enough to hold in one hand, making collecting video and photographic evidence that much easier.

The slightly lower price tag also makes it a popular choice for workplace schemes, as it shaves a little off the upfront cost of investing in iPad without you losing any of the core benefits.

Best for: Field sales, on-site reporting.

iPad mini 4

– 32GB or 128GB capacity (WiFi only or WiFi and cellular).

– 7.9″ 2048×1536 resolution display.

– A8 chip.

– 8MP iSight camera and 1.2MP FaceTime camera with 720p HD video.

– Apple Pay.

– Touch ID.

– Available in silver, gold and space grey.

Prices start from £311 ex VAT.

iPad mini 2

– 32GB capacity (WiFi only or WiFi and cellular).

– 7.9″ 2048×1536 resolution display.

– A7 processor.

– 8MP iSight camera and 1.2MP FaceTime camera with 720p HD video.

– Available in silver and space grey.

Prices start from £196 ex VAT.

Want to know more about iPad? See the full range here or get in touch with our team by popping your details in the form below. Alternatively, you can call them on 03332 409 306 or email sales@Jigsaw24.com

Apple announce new iPad Pro and iPad mini 4

Apple announce new iPad Pro and iPad mini 4

At last night’s Apple ‘Hey Siri’ event we were treated to not only a new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, but we’ll soon be able to get our hands on a brand new, super-sized iPad Pro and a refreshed iPad mini 4. Here’s how they shape up…

iPad Pro

The largest iPad to date, the iPad Pro features a stunning 12.9″ Retina display, 5.6 million pixels, the latest iOS and new 64-bit A9X chip, giving it enough power to rival most portable PCs.

It features:

– 32 or 128GB storage options available.

– Silver, gold and space grey colour option.

– 12.9″ Retina display packing in 5.6 million pixels, 2732×2048 resolution at 264 ppi.

– Refined Multi-Touch technology.

-8 mega-pixel iSight camera and 1.2 mega-pixel FaceTime HD camera.

– New Apple A9X chip, delivering up to 1.8 times the CPU performance and double the graphics performance of iPad Air 2.

UK pricing hasn’t been confirmed yet, but keep checking back in for pricing and availability details!

iPad mini 4

The iPad mini has had a face lift! It’s now 18% thinner (at just 6.1mm thin) and slightly lighter, and is powered by a new A8 processor chip. Available in 16, 64 or 128GB capacities, the iPad mini 4 now comes with iOS 9, Apple’s latest mobile operating system.

It features:

– 7.9″ display, packing in 3.1 million pixels and 2048×1536 resolution.

– iOS 9, Apple’ latest operating system.

– A8 chip for speedy performance.

– Touch ID.

– 8 mega-pixel iSight camera.

iPad mini 4 prices start from £319 for the WiFi model, £419 for WiFi + Cellular model and will be available in silver, space grey and gold.

Want to find out more about the latest Apple releases and when you can get your hands on them? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email sales@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news and reviews, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

JAMF Software release new Relo app for iPad

JAMF Software release new Relo app for iPad

JAMF Software took the opportunity of last week’s JAMF Nation ‘Ice-Out’ event to launch their latest endeavour – Relo for iPad, a handy little app that lets you shift all your important data from Android devices and tablets over to iPad and iPhone.

For anyone who’s tried to do this manually in the past without the aid of a dedicated app, especially any IT admins in big businesses, you’ll know that this can be a right chore. As well as being time-consuming and often frustrating, there’s also the added risk of losing important and sensitive data such as photos, videos and contacts, ending in information often being left on old devices. Ditto apps. But now JAMF Software, makers of the excellent Casper Suite, have addressed the needs of those working on multiple platforms, or making the move from Android to iOS, by letting them quickly and simply copy data from non-iOS devices to iPhone and iPad.

JAMF Software promise their Relo app will let users:

Bring Important Data With You. Relo wirelessly copies all contacts, photos and videos from an Android to a new iOS device. Just download the app on both devices, scan a QR code and you’re done!

• See iOS Versions of Your Apps. If you have an Android app that is also available in the App Store, Relo will display the iPhone or iPad version for you to download.

• Ensure Privacy of Your Data. Relo doesn’t upload any data to the cloud or anywhere else, ensuring that private information stays private for users and organisations alike.

Another big plus point for Relo: it’s completely free! You can download it right now from the App Store on your iPad or head on over to iTunes.

Want to know more about JAMF Software’s Casper Suite? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email sales@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news and tips, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Which iPad is for you? Jigsaw24’s iPad buyer’s guide

Which iPad is for you? Jigsaw24’s iPad buyer’s guide


iPad Air, iPad mini and iPad 2, what features you can expect from each, what uses we’d recommend them for, and a little on the all-important price factor too.

It was only in 2010 that Apple first introduced iPad, and since then the device has evolved in every way, becoming the biggest selling tablet in the process. iPad Air, the most recent addition to the line-up (from late 2013), is at the top end of the spectrum, with a great-looking Retina display, while iPad mini and its iPad mini with Retina display sibling are slightly smaller versions. You can also still get hold of the slightly older Apple iPad 2, which is a great option if you want to keep your costs down.

That’s a lot of tablets to choose from, and that’s before you even think about whether you need Cellular data support or are happy with just WiFi, or had a think about what storage capacity you’ll need (iPad storage ranges from 16GB to 128GB). Oh, and the most important consideration of all: what colour should you go for?

To find out which is right for you, have a read of our comparison below, or alternatively get in touch with us for advice, or just have a click around on our site to compare different iPad models.

Apple iPad Air
Apple iPad Air

iPad Air is Apple’s lightest and most powerful of the larger devices, and is where the Retina display and speedy processor really come into their own. 20% thinner and 28% lighter than the 4th gen iPad (weighing in at half a kilo), iPad Air is more portable, and its A7 processor and 64-bit architecture give it a significant performance boost. The Retina display’s 2048×1536 pixel resolution (264 pixels per inch) is higher than that of an HD TV, which makes for crisp photos and text. And all with a ten hour battery life!

We’d recommend for… Multimedia content. Consuming high quality HD video and images are where iPad Air’s Retina display and speedy processor really come into their own.

Options:

Buy iPad Air 16GB here – From £317 (£380.40 inc VAT)

Buy iPad Air 32GB here – From £384.50 (£461.40 inc VAT)

Buy iPad Air 64GB here – From £448.50 (£538.20 inc VAT)

Buy iPad Air 128GB here – From £513 (£615.60 inc VAT)

 Apple iPad Air on Jigsaw24
Apple iPad mini
Apple iPad mini/iPad mini with Retina display

If you’re after something even more portable, you’ll want to look at Apple’s iPad mini and iPad mini with Retina display. These measure just 7.85″ compared to the 9.7″ screen size of iPad Air and iPad 2, so they’re both more portable and a bit more comfortable for one-handed use (reading iBooks and using FaceTime, in particular). The iPad mini with Retina display, for a slightly higher price tag (for the 16GB base model you’re looking at a difference of about £70), ramps up the resolution from 1024×768 pixels to the same 2048×1536 pixels you get from iPad Air too, for a better reading and viewing experience.

We’d recommend for… Portability. With its smaller size, Apple iPad mini is perfect for using on the go, and especially reading iBooks.

Options:

– Buy iPad mini 16GB here – From £203 (£243.60 inc VAT)

– Buy iPad mini with Retina display here – From £265.83 (£319 inc VAT)

Apple iPad mini on Jigsaw24

Apple iPad 2
Apple iPad 2

iPad 2 comes with a 9.7″ display with 1024×768 pixel resolution and an A5 processor chip, packing in great features for consuming and creating content. You get back and front-facing iSight and FaceTime cameras for capturing photos and video, and it’s ready for Apple’s latest mobile operating system, iOS 7, which includes tons of useful creativity and productivity apps. You can also pick up some great deals on iPad 2 (see below!).

N.B. One thing to note is that iPad 2 uses Apple’s 30-pin USB cable and charger, rather than the Lightning port that you get with iPad Air and iPad mini, so this could be something you’d like to think about if you’re looking at peripherals to use with it.

We’d recommend for… All uses. Apple iPad 2 is the most affordable option for any buyer who wants a 9.7″ tablet, but also wants to keep costs down. It can easily handle most tasks and is packed with features.

Options:

– Buy iPad 2 16GB WiFi here – From £261.50 (£313.80 inc VAT)

– Buy iPad 2 16GB WiFi and cellular here – From £344.50 (£413.40 inc VAT)

Next, you’ll need to think about…

Storage capacity

iPad comes with storage iterations of 16GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128GB (iPad mini without a Retina display only comes in 16GB variations), and which you should opt for really depends on what you’re going to be using iPad for. Note that iPad doesn’t support SD cards or expandable storage. If you’re a musician or music aficionado, working with or viewing lots of HD video, or just an app buff and think you’ll need access to large numbers of storage-intensive apps, your media and content is soon going to start taking up a lot of space.

The size of content can vary a bit, but generally an HD movie can be around 3-4GB for HD quality or 1-2GB for standard definition, a TV episode could be anything up to about 2GB in HD (around 1GB in SD), and a standard audio LP around 500-600MB. A few examples of apps could vary from Angry Birds (35.5MB) to Facebook (52.7MB) to Apple’s iMovie video app (635MB).

Of course, once you’ve bought your content from Apple’s iTunes or the App Store, you can save everything to the cloud for backup. That means you don’t have to have all your content on your device at once, and can sync certain content with your iPad as you choose.

WiFi or WiFi + Cellular

The Cellular models are a little more expensive as they let you connect to WiFi and also use data wirelessly on a SIM card in the same way as you do with a smartphone. The WiFi model, as you would imagine, needs to be in range of a WiFi network to be able to access the internet. As a very rough guide, there can be around £80-£100 difference between the two models, so it’s worth thinking about when you’ll need to be using data. The Cellular version will also come with the additional cost of a data plan or a pre-paid SIM, which are usually upwards of £10 per month.

Colour

Last but not least, colour. iPad 2 comes in white or black varieties, iPad mini in white and silver or black and slate, and iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display are available in the more futuristic-sounding space grey or silver. What you choose ultimately boils down to personal taste. If you’re a beige fanatic, or simply must have a device to match your stylish hot pink upholstery, there’s always a wide range of iPad cases and covers to suit you too.

That’s about the long and short of it, but if you still can’t make up your mind as to which iPad is right for you, please do feel free to get in touch! Give the team a call on 03332 409 306 or email sales@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @WeAreJigsaw24  on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

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Back to Apple iPad Air

A managed 1:1 iPad deployment at Yew Tree Primary

A managed 1:1 iPad deployment at Yew Tree Primary

Yew Tree Primary School, in Sandwell, became an Apple Regional Training Centre (RTC), offering training courses on how Mac and iPad can enhance the curriculum. When they decided it was time to move to a 1:1 iPad deployment for KS2, they tendered for an IT provider.

Thanks to our iPad expertise and successful e7 Project, Yew Tree decided we were the best partner to help them get the full benefit of iPad. We now help them with all of their IT solutions and services. As long-standing Apple users, Yew Tree knew that Mac and iPad would get pupils working creatively, and both collaboratively and independently, to achieve their aim of pupils becoming ‘self-organised, independent creative learners.’

The logical way to go from there, headteacher Howard Martin thought, would be a 1:1 rollout: “giving access 24/7 and 365 days a year was a natural progression – it is about totally taking the lid off pupils’ opportunities to learn and at the same time opening their eyes to the world and raising their aspirations.”

Engaging pupils, raising teaching standards

Howard wanted to engage pupils, enrich the curriculum and raise teaching standards, and chose us to help implement a 1:1 iPad mini deployment at Yew Tree, winning a bid over other IT providers. “Deploying 270 iPad devices to our KS2 pupils with 24/7 access was a brave step,” he explained, “but we had the confidence in our staff, our parents and pupils to make it a success. The fact that we had the support of, and confidence in Jigsaw24 was comforting.”

We provided Yew Tree with all of their 270 iPad mini devices, pre-loaded them with the apps, pre-configured them to the school’s network and asset tagged everything for easier management. Doing all of this at our end meant Yew Tree could start using iPad in lessons straight away, without any awkward in-class setup time. We then repackaged them so staff and pupils could open them for themselves. “Issuing the iPad devices to pupils and letting them experience the unboxing of their own iPad mini was a bit like Christmas day – almost an emotional experience,” Howard said.

Pupils using the iPad deployment at Yew Tree Primary School

Pupils using the iPad deployment at Yew Tree Primary School

A secure, managed deployment

We then suggested Yew Tree consider security options and some form of mobile device management (MDM). We recommended Lightspeed Systems’ Bottle Rocket, Web Filter and MDM solutions to tackle both of these, and Howard was impressed by the granular control, which enabled the monitoring of iPad usage, web filtering for home use, reporting on inappropriate searches, teacher-controlled restrictions and ease of use it would all give the school. The Web Filter tool was particularly important for keeping pupils safe online and making sure they weren’t accessing anything inappropriate, both on and off the school network.

“Since the iPad devices were going home [with pupils], we needed to be sure that any filtering device would be robust and secure, and Lightspeed’s track record gave us that confidence to choose Bottle Rocket – an extremely effective filter,” he said.

Both pupils and parents have reacted in a very positive way since the 1:1 iPad mini deployment, according to Lisa Hollan, RTC manager at Yew Tree, and have readily signed a user agreement respecting what Yew Tree is trying to achieve by giving each KS2 pupil their own iPad. She said: “Parents’ meetings explained the iPad devices’ purpose, the e-safety precautions we were putting in place, and also how to take care of the devices.”

Enhancing teaching with iPad

Staff, after having used iPad for teaching for some time, have also reacted well to the 1:1 deployment. “Staff had been used to using iPad to deliver aspects of the curriculum, so when we announced the 1:1 rollout, they were delighted. They knew the value they would bring to enhancing their teaching. Over time, iPad has become indispensible to them.”

Engaging learners, empowering teachers

The 1:1 programme has let Howard offer pupils greater personalisation, creativity and choice, facilitate independence and collaboration, engage the most reluctant learners and empower teachers, all of which supports any time, any where learning (he now aims to roll out to KS1 pupils soon). And Jigsaw24’s services have made him confident in achieving that:

“We would recommend Jigsaw24 wholeheartedly,” said Howard. Their pre-delivery service was excellent, even down to all the iPad devices being pre-configured to our network and the apps being deployed. It was excellent. All the sales, technical and support staff have been extremely helpful and always very professional.”

For more information about iPad for your classroom, get in touch with us on 03332 409 333, email learning@Jigsaw24.com or take a look at our education site for the latest education news, tips and resources.

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Why choose Apple for SEND students?

Why choose Apple for SEND students?

As an Apple accredited trainer in schools, I spend a lot of time in classrooms, helping teachers find ways to use iPad, iPod touch and the Apple Mac range to support their teaching style, and one area where I always see a huge amount of progress is with SEND students.

OS X and iOS, the operating systems that power all of Apple’s devices, have built-in accessibility features that mean SEND students can use the same device as the rest of the class, and apps like Proloquo2Go are a great budget alternative to specialist equipment. Here we’re rounding up everything you need to know to get started using Apple technology, including recommended apps and advice from SEND schools who have already made the switch. Remember, if you have any questions, you can always get in touch with the team on 03332 409 333 or at learning@Jigsaw24.com.

Step one: Decide which Apple device is for you

We can provide, install and configure the entire Apple range, from iPad mini to the mighty Mac Pro. However, here’s a quick guide to the devices we think will be most at home in your classroom…

iPad With customisable controls (including switching everything to voice commands) and a host of creation and communication apps available, iPad is perfect for students who struggle to communicate, and by extension involve themselves fully in lessons.

iPod touch Portable, durable and perfect for recording evidence, iPod touch’s size makes it the ideal choice if you want something students and staff will find it easy to take with them everywhere.

MacBook Air If you want something that’s mobile but not a tablet, go for the extremely light and very fast MacBook Air, which uses an SSD rather than a HDD to ensure the fastest possible startup and load times. If you have a classroom iPad deployment, you can use a lock and charge case to sync them all with a teacher’s MacBook Air overnight, so students have all the resources they need pre-loaded each morning.

Mac mini If you’re stuck for space (or strapped for cash), the sandwich-sized Mac mini packs the power of a PC into a tiny box that’ll work with your existing keyboards and displays – this is excellent if you have a lot of modified displays or assistive devices that you want to keep using, but still want to update an ageing computer.

iMac Powerful and easy to use thanks to its ultra-simple OS X operating system, iMac’s all-in-one design means it takes up less space than a traditional desktop computer and leaves far fewer cables trailing in its wake. It’s also packed with assistive technologies that make rich content much more accessible and further support SEND students.

Students use iPod touch to take photographs at Jesmond Gardens Primary School

Students use iPod touch to take photographs at Jesmond Gardens Primary School

Step two: Level the playing field with built-in accessibility tools

You can buy plenty of assistive devices to help students interact with their iPad or Mac, but the beauty of Apple hardware is that it gives SEND students the chance to use exactly the same device as their peers, helping combat the stigma around SEND. All these devices come with audio, display and interaction options that allow a huge amount of customisation if you work with students who have mobility, hearing or visual impairments, but there are also some general accessibility features built in that we don’t want you to overlook!

Modified displays Invert colours, see images in greyscale, enlarge cursors so students can find things more easily or zoom in on whole pages or specific sections of a page. If you want students to focus on one task, you can even choose to view distraction-free, text only versions of web pages.

A range of audio and visual cues Use VoiceOver to read onscreen text to visually impaired students, alert hearing impaired students to messages using Screen Flash, and choose to hear stereo audio as mono.

Personalise interaction Attach assistive devices, customise mouse and keyboard controls, or even use voice commands – whatever makes it easiest for your students to access their Mac. Use a trackpad rather than a mouse, and you can even customise the gestures used to perform common actions in order to make them easier for students to use.

Guided Access can be used to lock students into the app that they’ll need for a lesson, and lets you control which features are available so that they can’t accidentally change any settings. And all you need to do to access it is triple click!

Assistive touch lets you create new gestures, change anything that’s controlled by a multi-finger gesture to a simpler single finger gesture and lets you represent physical switches like the home button on the main touch screen.

Dictation does what it says on the tin – lets students dictate notes and messages into their iPad rather than writing, and even access features using voice commands.

Step three: Get your staff on board and up to speed with Apple Professional Development
Apple Professional Development training at Sidney Stringer Academy

Apple Professional Development training at Sidney Stringer Academy

Apple Professional Development is, unsurprisingly, Continuing Professional Development that focuses on Apple devices like iPad or desktop Macs. APD sessions are often a great way to kick off your move to Mac or an iPad rollout as they give staff the chance to get hands-on with the devices, learn skills that are relevant to their subject area and practices using key apps, so they don’t have to worry about whether they’re doing something right once they get in front of students.

The ideal APD course for educators who want to explore iPad or Mac accessibility features and build learning experiences is Reaching All Learners. This day-long course covers how to support every type of learner, including those with visual, auditory, motor and learning disabilities. It also teaches how to use the built-in Apple tools to provide students full access to the curriculum, improve access and enhance learning for all learners.

If you’re only just getting started on a new technology plan, there are also vision and planning sessions available, where an Apple Distinguished Educator will help you find the right Apple kit to support your ICT vision and help you plan a rollout. Download the course catalogue below to see the full range, or have a read about our top five courses to get a taste of what’s available – and remember, you can always give the team a call for more info.

Download the Apple Professional Development course catalogue

Step four: Try new approaches to learning with apps for education

 

Find top apps for SEND students in our App of the Week archive

Step six: Take a look at these top resources for ideas on how to adapt your teaching style
For Mac users

Essential read: Apple’s guide to assistive features If you have a ticklist of features you know your classroom tech needs, head over to Apple’s full rundown of the accessibility features in iOS and OS X devices. As well as nicely illustrating what each device could do, it’s a great resource for anyone who wants to get up to speed on the features of the Apple tech they’ve already got.

The Jigsaw24 blog – it may be blowing our own horn, but we’re proud of our blog. Head over for case studies, resources and tips on which technology is right for you.

Richard Harrold from ACS Cobham International School explains how his school has been using ICT to help SEND students

For iOS devices

Essential read: An iPod for SEND primer Over in Illinois, Springfield Public Schools have been compiling a master list of all their best resources and recommendations, which they’ve kindly made public for SEND teachers everywhere. Here you’ll find top tips for using iPad and iPod touch alongside app recommendations and video tutorials, all broken down by the area of SEND where they’ll be most useful. Definitely worth a read!

Which are the best SEND apps for non-verbal students? We found this great article rounding up all the best apps for SEND staff who are thinking of incorporating iPod into their teaching, and we think it’s a must-read…

AT Classroom pit iPad against a desktop computer to see what each offers students

Apple’s official (and helpfully illustrated) guide to the accessibility features in iOS The full list, just in case you ever need a quick reference guide to what’s available for each student.

If you want to know more about deploying iPad, iPod or any of the Mac range in your classroom, you can reach our team on 03332 409 333 or at learning@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news and how-tos, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Helping students with complex learning difficulties communicate at Great Oaks School

Helping students with complex learning difficulties communicate at Great Oaks School


After working with Creative Partnerships and the Department of Electronic Computer Science at Southampton University on a range of new technology trials, Great Oaks School joined Jigsaw24’s e7 Project to see if iPad mini would be able to help students with a range of learning and communication difficulties access the curriculum. The results? Increased engagement and communication, plus one or two surprises…

Download this case study as a PDF

Great Oaks School initially started using iPad as a communication device for SLD (Severe Learning Difficulties) students. Working with Erica Smith from Creative Partnerships and E.A Draffan from the University of Southampton, they attempted to find a digital alternative to their existing PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System) and to set up their own social networking system, which eventually became the Go!Platform.

“To make a new symbol for the PECS really is an onerous task,” explained Creative co-ordinator Roger Hardy, “because you have to go to the internet, you need to purchase a license to be able to use the symbols, get the symbol up, print it out, chop that out and velcro it both sides to create a set of new resources. That’s a lot of work for our support staff, so we were originally looking to see if there were ready-made apps on iPad that we could use to replace that.”

Despite some initial frustrations with the apps on offer – many used a different PECS symbol set to Great Oaks’, were “too American”, “gimmicky” or “made the massive assumption that SLD students would be able to navigate away from a page and come back” – Great Oaks’ team were impressed with the potential of iPad, and the volume of resources available through the App Store. They began looking into other potential uses for the device.

Joining the e7 Project

“I was looking on the Internet for organisations that were doing development work with schools and iPad, and Jigsaw24 came up,” said Roger. “Originally, we were told that because of the size of the school we didn’t really qualify. Then I got a call back saying that they were thinking about working with special schools and schools of different sizes and they were happy with what I’d put in writing already and thought it might be worth developing.”

After consulting with their e7 representative, Andy Cain, the Great Oaks team decided to opt for iPad mini during their trial, as these devices were not only easier for children to hold, but included a built-in camera that could be used as part of the school’s many cross-curricular creative projects, and would allow staff to take pictures of real items around school to use as PECS symbols.

Getting staff trained on iPad (and winning over parents)

A few of the teachers at Great Oaks already used iPad as their main device, so were receptive to twilight training sessions run by Erica Smith and creative trainer Ricky Tart. Other staff members were then encouraged to pass on what they’d learned to other users. But “the best way that we’ve found to get people’s skills up is to do projects,” Roger explained. “Working with creative people like Ricky Tart on film-making, animation and poetry projects has really helped to cement the learning that has taken place.

“A lot of our training has happened by one of us seeing what everyone else is doing and saying, ‘ooh, I’d like to do that,’ so we’ve trained each other up. It’s becoming more integrated in the school that we just use iPad. We’re making short films as part of our Arts Week, and we’re going to do that almost completely on the iPad. These films will be entered into several national competitions and really develop the skills of both pupils and staff. We might even use the minute-long preview template in iMovie for making the films. But obviously that is a great way to do training, and it lends itself not only to all the technical elements of making a documentary, but also uploading and editing it.”

Using iPad for project work has also helped the school win over parents who were unsure about the scheme. Using a combination of their e7 iPad mini deployment and the school’s social media site, Go!Platform, students were able to create and upload content for their parents to view before the day was over, so they could catch up with what their children were doing during the day.

“When we had the e7 iPad deployment we were encouraging the kids to film all the time,” said Roger. “I’ve got a three part film of a boy in my class making a clay rhino, and he’s not got great speech and language but you could see him developing as he went along, because he’d seen YouTube videos and he understood the format. It’s the unexpected stuff that’s been really amazing.”

Introducing students to iPad and launching the e7 Project

“When we did the first pilot project, using iPad as a communication tool, I was terrified,” admitted Roger. “One of the very first students looked at it – she’s not a verbal communicator and we thought she’d really like it, but she picked it up and just flung it across the room. But it survived and it’s fine. We’re still using that iPad!”

With the iPad crash-tested, Roger and the rest of the staff set about using sensory apps to acclimatise students with very high support needs to the new devices, and “by time we started the e7 Project with the iPad mini it was completely different. The kids could literally not wait because they’ve already seen iPad devices around the school. Andy from Jigsaw24 came down and we had all the tablets stacked up in a pile with a spotlight on them in the hall, and all the parents came in and [the pupils] couldn’t believe that they were actually taking these things away with them.”

It wasn’t all plain sailing, but Roger and the team found that the sense of ownership generated by a 1:1 scheme like the e7 Project meant that pupils took far better care of their devices than expected. “Of the 40 we had, none were broken. An iPad trolley that moves around and you log in and log out, that’s not really anything to do with you [as a pupil]. But having an iPad that’s yours and that you take home and do all your work on, compose your own music on, that was a huge development. We had one case where [one of our pupils with behavioural difficulties] was losing her temper, she knew she was about to trash the room and she asked someone to hold her iPad mini for her.

Improving speech and communication with iPad and game-based learning

While Great Oaks are still searching for their ideal PECS app (current favourite Widgit Go is still being developed for iOS) they’ve had some major success with MLD students, which Roger puts down to the more interactive, role-based nature of learning through apps and games. “There’s one particular child in my class who’s really weak on speech and language, ” he explained. “He loved [playing Minecraft on the iPad], joined in with everyone else, and as a matter of course if you see a group of children playing Minecraft together, they don’t stop talking and listening. Our speech therapist could not believe how much his speech and language had improved over that one term. And I had to say, to be honest this is solely down to Minecraft, because he wants to be a peer. We are developing a Minecraft after school club in the autumn of 2013.

“If you have a lot of learning difficulties and you’re used to not being able to keep up with everyone, and then suddenly when you immerse yourself in a game, you can become somebody who looks like everybody else, behaves like everybody else in the game. That alter ego is a brand new person. And I think that enabled him or encouraged him to work in that role, because there he was on an equal footing with the others and he had the cognitive capacity to do all the tasks in the game, so the only thing that was holding him back was his own lack of confidence. And now he doesn’t stop talking – he’s alive with it! He talks all the time about getting the iPad mini back.”

The future of Great Oaks’ iPad deployment

After three years of testing out various devices, Great Oaks have now purchased enough iPad devices for all Key Stage 4 pupils. All teaching staff have now been issued with an iPad mini as well. They’re also looking to revamp their Wi-Fi network in order to better support the 70 devices they do have, and are hoping that they’ll be able to access a broader range of apps and features when they leave their local authority and take control of their own IT setup later in the year. And would they recommend the e7 scheme? “I have! I’ve been recommending it to people I know at other schools and have been saying please get in touch with Jigsaw24, because I think maybe they might not be aware the e7 Project exists or think that they won’t qualify, but everyone should ask!”

Download this case study as a PDF

If you want to know more about the e7 Project or iPad in SEN, give the team a call on 03332 409 333 or email learning@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter.