Monday, 11 May 2015 22:31

Shift in education to 'all-wireless' classrooms

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Aruba Networks says it is making inroads into the primary and higher education sectors to meet strong market demand, signing up new Australian customers, as Australia shifts towards "all-wireless" classrooms.

Steve Coad, Aruba Networks Managing Director, Australia and New Zealand says James Cook University (JCU) has embarked on a large-scale implementation of Aruba Networks 802.11ac wireless solution to create a comprehensive wireless solution throughout its Townsville, Cairns and Singapore campuses.

According to Coad, “pioneering” education institutions across the country that have recently embraced Mobility Defined Networks, as well as James Cook University, include Mount Waverly Secondary College in Victoria, Stuartholme School, Queensland, Cranebrook High School and Caddies Creek Public School in NSW.

Coad says there has been strong demand for its 802.11ac solution among Australian educators, which demonstrates the shift towards an "all-wireless classroom".

“A significant portion of our Australian customers are grounded in the Education sector, with the industry well known as early adopters of emerging technologies such as high-performance and unified communications Wi-Fi. Our growing partnerships in this space are a testament to our deep, technical understanding of the technology required in education environments today as well as moving forward, and the core infrastructure required to support it.”   

James Cook University has implemented Aruba Airwave to ensure comprehensive management of its wireless and wired networks, and is piloting Aruba ClearPass Access Management to both securely manage user access via a single policy engine, as well as deliver a customised University Guest Access experience.

The university’s John Newitt said the university required a high speed and seamless 802.11ac WLAN network that had the power to support high-density areas, from auditoriums to large lecture theatres.

“We needed to refresh our entire LAN, WLAN and Data Centre network infrastructure which included a next generation wireless network which was easy to operate and could scale with the University’s technology advancements over the next five years. Aruba offered us an excellent Education focused solution that has been proven in high-density environments, and fitted our business well.”

Coad said Aruba recently unveiled a Running the Risk Report which questioned nearly 12,000 people from 23 countries across various industries, including Education.

“It showed that approximately 62% of Australian educators use their personal smart phones for work purposes, 58% rely on their laptops for work and 25% use their own tablets. Interestingly, the survey also found that Australian educators are more switched on about IT security than their global counterparts.”

Aruba claims other users in the Australian education sector, including The University of New England (UNE), The Catholic Education Office Sydney, TAFE NSW – South Western Sydney Institute, University of Technology Sydney (UTS), and Ravenswood School for Girls.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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