One Tablet (From China) Per Child | Bangkok Post: learning

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One Tablet (From China) Per Child

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Chinese IT & mobile powerhouses (ZTE, Huawei, Lenovo) are competing to supply low-priced tablet computers to Thai school children. 

tablet computer kids

Photo of two young students using a tablet computer. Getting ready for some serious swiping and tapping to the right websites (Photo: Patipat Janthong).

Read previous articles that chart the progress of Thailand's One Tablet Per Child policy here: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5.

Read previous articles on tablet computer technology: Rise of Tablet ComputersBlackberry , Lenovo , Kindle.

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Telecommunications: Three Chinese firms vie to supply tablets by Suchit Leesa-nguansuk


The Thai government expects to sign an agreement with the Chinese government next month to buy 900,000 tablet computers worth 2.2 billion baht.

Under the purchase agreement, the three prospective Chinese tablet manufacturers - ZTE, Huawei and Lenovo - are likely to supply a combined 900,000 tablets at US$75 per unit to the Thai government, said a source at the Office of the Basic Education Commission.

At the equivalent of 2,340 baht, the price was well below the government's target price of 3,400 baht per unit, he said.

The plan to give tablet computers to all schoolchildren was one of the most high-profile election promises of the ruling Pheu Thai Party.

Authorities have approved a budget of 1.9 billion baht to purchase 900,000 tablets to be distributed to 800,000 primary-school students, plus 100,000 more for Prathom 4 students nationwide.

Additional funds as required would be reimbursed from the government's fiscal budget, the source said.

The One Tablet Per Child project could cost as much as 33 billion baht if the government wants to give tablets to all secondary-school students.

The official said that the government, through the Foreign Affairs Ministry, had submitted a proposal to the Chinese government, which had agreed to select one tablet supplier.

The suppliers must have international brand reputation and proven capacity for tablet production. They must also provide after-sales service for two years.

The specifications call for a WiFi-enabled tablet with a seven-inch screen and storage capacity of 8-16 gigabytes.

Once the memorandum of understanding is signed, the official said the the Chinese government would need to deliver at least 1,000 prototype tablets for testing before the supplier starts full production.

The tablet programme has prompted widespread debate, with critics saying the lack of suitable educational content was the main drawback at the moment. Others question whether schools or parents will be able to monitor children's use of the devices and prevent the use of inappropriate content.

(Source: Bangkok Post, Telecommunications, Three Chinese firms vie to supply tablets, 30/01/2012, Suchit Leesa-nguansuk, link


 
tablet computer - a mobile computer larger than a mobile phone but smaller than a notebook, the most famous being Apple's iPad, held like a book you are reading and operated with a touchscreen (See Wikipedia)

the Thai government expects to sign an agreement with the Chinese government next month to buy 900,000 tablet computers worth 2.2 billion baht

telecommunications - telecom, dealing with telephones การโทรคมนาคม หมายถึง การสื่อสารทางไกลโดยใช้โทรศัพท์ เคเบิล โทรทัศน์ วิทยุและโทรเลข

vie - compete (each tries to do or get something that not all can have or do)
three Chinese firms vie to supply tablets

purchase - buy  
purchase agreement - an agreement to buy something

prospective -
prospective Chinese tablet manufacturers


Lenovo
- a Chinese company that makes desktop and notebook computers, workstations, servers, storage drives, IT management software, in 2005 bought IBM's personal computer business, an Android-based Lenovo tablet computer is already available in Thailand (See Wikipedia)

ZTE Corporation - a Chinese telecommunications equipment and systems company founded in 1985, "as of 2011 it is the second-largest Chinese telecoms equipment maker (after world number two Huawei) and the world's fourth-largest mobile phone manufacturer, core products are wireless, exchange, access, optical transmission and data telecommunications gear; mobile phones; and telecommunications software, customers are primarily telecommunications service providers and mobile network operators, also an OEM and manufactures products which retail under other brand names" (See Wikipedia)

Huawei
- a Chinese  networking and telecommunications equipment and services company, "the second-largest supplier of mobile telecommunications infrastructure equipment in the world (after Ericsson) founded in 1987 by Ren Zhengfei and is a private company owned by its employees,  Huawei has over 110,000 employees, around 46% of whom are engaged in research and development (R&D), its products and services have been deployed in more than 140 countries and it currently serves 45 of the world's 50 largest telecoms operators" (See Wikipedia)

under the
purchase agreement, the three prospective Chinese tablet manufacturers - ZTE, Huawei and Lenovo - are likely to supply a combined 900,000 tablets at US$75 per unit to the Thai government

source - someone who gives information to the media แหล่งข่าว
a source at the Office of the Basic Education Commission

well below - much lower than
the price was well below the government's target price

equivalent - the same as เท่าเทียมกันกับ
target - a goal; the amount you are planning to achieve เป้าหมาย

at the equivalent of 2,340 baht, the price was well below the government's target price of 3,400 baht per unit

high-profile - well-known, very visible, every knows about it and is talking about it
election - the process of choosing a person or a group of person for a position, especially by voting elect (v) electoral (adj) synonym: the polls การเลือกตั้ง

election promise -
something that a politician or political party promises to give people if they vote for them and are elected
high-profile
election promises - an election promise that everyone knows about

ruling -
have power, currently control the government

the plan to give tablet computers to all schoolchildren was one of the most high-profile election promises of the ruling Pheu Thai Party

budget - the amounts of money that an organisation has available to spend on different things during a period งบประมาณ (See Wikipedia)
distributed - made available to customers through stores and middlemen

primary
- first and most important
primary school - the first level that a small child studies in after they finish a first year of kindergarden

nationwide - throughout a whole country ทั่วทั้งประเทศ

authorities have approved a budget of 1.9 billion baht to purchase 900,000 tablets to be distributed to 800,000 primary-school students, plus 100,000 more for Prathom 4 students nationwide

funds - money needed or available to spend on something เงินทุน
fiscal - related to government spending; connected with the government budget, i.e., public money เกี่ยวกับงบประมาณ
government's fiscal budget - the government's budget (plans for government spending) that it makes for the year   

reimburse - paying money to someone after they have used their own money to puy something

reimbursed from the government's fiscal budget  

additional funds as required would be reimbursed from the government's fiscal budget  

the One Tablet Per Child project could cost as much as 33 billion baht if the government wants to give tablets to all secondary-school students

submitted - formally given to someone so that they can make a decision about it ยื่น ยื่นเอกสารเพื่อการพิจารณา
proposal - a plan or suggestion for a group to consider ข้อเสนอ
submitted a proposal

the official said that the government, through the Foreign Affairs Ministry, had submitted a proposal to the Chinese government, which had agreed to select one tablet supplier 

international - between countries ระหว่างประเทศ 
brand - a type of product made by a particular company ตรา, ยี่ห้อ
reputation - the opinion people have about how good or bad someone or something is ชื่อเสียง  ความนับหน้าถือตา

brand reputation -
how good customers feel about a company's brand (have they had good experiences with it)
international
brand reputation - how customers all over the world feel about a brand

capacity - the amount of something that can be produced ความสามารถในการ (ผลิต)
provide - to give someone something that they want or need
proven capacity for tablet production - in the past they have shown that they can produce good tablet computers

after-sales service - work to repair the machine and keep it in good condition after buying it
provide after-sales service

the suppliers must have international brand reputation and proven capacity for tablet production. They must also provide after-sales service for two years

specifications
- detailed information about how something is made or done (includeds requirements, design, details, features)

WiFi-enabled tablet
screen -  
seven-inch screen

storage - the putting and keeping of things in a special place for use in the future การเก็บ
storage capacity - the space on a computer's hard disk that can be used to store files
storage capacity of 8-16 gigabytes 

the
specifications call for a WiFi-enabled tablet with a seven-inch screen and storage capacity of 8-16 gigabytes 

memorandum - an informal legal agreement ข้อตกลง
memorandum of understanding (MOU) - a temporary written agreement between two companies that explains how they intend to do business with each other in the future and what their relationship will be (See Wikipedia)

sign memorandum of understanding  

prototype - test version of a new product (before producing in large quantities)
prototype tablets - a test version of a new tablet computer

once the memorandum of understanding is signed, the official said the the Chinese government would need to deliver at least 1,000 prototype tablets for testing before the supplier starts full production

widespread - happening or existing in many places, or affecting many people อย่างแพร่หลาย
debate - a discussion or formal argument on an issue between people with different views (See Wikipedia)
widespread debate

critics - people who look for things that are wrong and bad about a project or idea; people who look for and point out problems in something; people who don't like something and who state their opinion about it นักวิจารณ์

lack
- does not have ขาดแคลน
suitable
- acceptable or right for a situation เหมาะสม
content - the subject, ideas, or story that a piece of writing or a magazine, newspaper, radio, television programme deals with เนื้อหา,สาระ

suitable content -
acceptable texts, video, pictures, games, etc (here: acceptable for children, not adults)
lack suitable content  -
does not have suitable content

inappropriate - not suitable, not appropriate, not acceptable
inappropriate content  - texts, videos and photos that are not good for children (with violence or sex, for example)

moment - a very short period of time; a particular time or occasionชั่วขณะ, โอกาสสำคัญ
at the moment - now

monitor - to regularly check something or watch someone in order to find out what is happening ตรวจสอบ ตรวจตรา เฝ้าจับตาดู  เฝ้าดู จับตาดู keep track of ตรวจ, ติดตาม, เฝ้าสังเกต

the tablet programme has prompted widespread debate, with critics saying the lack of suitable educational content was the main drawback at the moment. Others question whether schools or parents will be able to monitor children's use of the devices and prevent the use of inappropriate content

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