Henrico to decide whether to ditch Apple iBooks for Dell laptops in middle schools

“This spring, Texas-based Dell Inc. beat out Apple Computer Inc. to supply laptops to Henrico County high school students and teachers. And if Dell has its way, Henrico won’t dish out Apples to middle school students and teachers next year,” Olympia Meola reports for The Richmond Times-Dispatch. “Until this fall, Henrico high school students toted Apple iBooks. Middle school students still use Apples. In June, that contract is up for grabs.”

Meola reports, “When making a pitch for the $17.9 million, four-year high school contract, Dell offered to provide at least 14,000 middle school machines for $20 less per unit than the high school laptops. The school system has until Nov. 1 to sign on. The Henrico school system purchased 15,800 Dell laptops at $1,131 apiece for the high school program, compared with Apple’s offer of $1,386 per unit. Joseph P. Rapisarda Jr., county attorney, said the School Board can accept Dell’s middle school offer without seeking other proposals. But if the county issued a request for proposals for the middle school contract, Apple could bid again. A lease for the majority of the iBooks expires in June.”

“School technology officials are still waiting to see how the Dells perform now that a vast majority of high school students are using them. So far, only a few issues have been reported,” Meola reports. “Meanwhile, little has been said about the iBooks, which have been in use in the middle schools for the past three years.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: For some reason, we’re not hopeful that Apple Macs will be chosen for Henrico’s middle school students and teachers next year. Expect more Henrico County women to wet themselves standing in line for $50 Apple iBooks in the future.

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23 Comments

  1. I don’t know the economics involved in a trade-in program, but a trade in value of $75 ($25 more than Henrico sold the iBooks for) would have generated a net price per replacement iBook $20 lower than Dell’s unit price.

    Could Apple have made these iBooks available to the public through a third party (which would have then sold them for $150 each)? Could the third party have made money after paying the logistical costs associated with such a deal? I don’t know, but tend to think it possible.

  2. Gregg and Others,

    According to the article, the price of the Dhell’s: $1131. The price of the iBooks: $1386. Thus the Dhell’s are $255 cheaper. A trade-in of $75 is not going to tip the balance.

    Unfortunately public officials tend to only look at the dollar amount.

    Peace.

  3. http://macvspc.info/

    Old news here, no doubt- but someone needs to send them the link- perhaps I will!

    Plus, they can go buy their iBooks from amazon, who (after rebate) has the 14″ G4 for $1199.

    After most of their PC laptops get buggy, slow due to viruses and adware, and basically cease to be productive- that oerceived “savings” will be moot.

    No, no kool-aid guzzler here, just a recent convert after extensive research.

    Then again, Ford always seems to win the contracts with it’s Taurus over Camrys.

  4. Please, Henrico officials, Please get some decent police presence at the next auction. You can justify it by not having any security costs during your used Dull laptop auction (sooner than you think), cause dere ain’t gonna be no one dere to buy your crap.

  5. zupchuck:

    Oh come on, it is a little funny!

    Maybe, Henrico Cty officials could organise a ticketed queuing system a la your favourite deli. Hardly beyond the realms of human intelligence.

    Personally, I’ve lost interest in this story and the fate of the children in Henrico Cty; on the basis that you get the elected officials you deserve, Henrico residents made their bed and now they can lie in it. If they want their kids to grow up well versed in playing games, cleaning viruses and adware and trying to work out why “Shut down” is nested under the “Start” button, Windows is clearly the platform for them.

  6. i used to live in virginni a long time ago. that was one state i was glad to leave. what a collection of trailer-trash; between the god-shouters and intermarried backwoods hicks, it’s no wonder that they can’t figure out what type of computer to use there. it’s really amazing that anyone there knows how to spell computer, let alone use one. this is the state that has strict term limits on virtually all elected positions; nobody can stand anyone else for any length of time! i don’t know why they even bother trying to edjukate anyone; all the spawn there seem interested in is breeding and getting high.

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