Apple released its latest iPhone to the public last week, and the Mobile Learning program has yet to decide how it will use the new device.
Saltsman, the executive director for innovation in learning and educational technology, revealed that not much has been planned in response to Apple’s new release. Some have questioned whether or not the mobile learning program would continue, but Saltsman said that specific question could not be answered fully.
“The mobile learning program is always under evaluation to ensure that it continues to move us forward,” Saltsman said. “We’ve not had specific conversations about the iPhone 5 per se. It’s a great step forward and one that continues to advance us into the post-PC world.”
Saltsman said the mobile learning program provides students with the most current shipping version of an iPhone or iPod touch. In this case, students who transfer in next semester, or others who are up for renewal mid-cycle would receive the latest version.
There have been mixed reviews of Apple’s new product. While some say it is the greatest phone yet, others have yet to see any big changes to the iPhone 5’s predecessor, the iPhone 4S.
Chase Schubert, senior history education major from Allen, said he didn’t think it was that big of a deal.
“I’m happy it came out because I have an iPhone 3, and now I can get the 4 at a cheaper price,” Schubert said. “I know it has a bigger screen and the connector is different, but from what I’ve heard, it doesn’t seem to be a big step up from the iPhone 4.”
Apple’s home website shows comparisons among the 5, 4S and 4. The iPhone 5 is lighter, a near ounce difference in weight from the iPhone 4S. It’s taller, giving it an extra row in apps. It has increased its battery life to 225 standby hours; 25 hours more than the 4S, but still 75 hours less than the 4.
The charging connector is a brand new model called Lightning. The downside is its incompatibility with the 4S and 4, but its small size gives it a greater chance of survival since the 30-Pin model has had problems with durability.
There are a few other perks to the new model, but no huge changes. Saltsman says the phone itself won’t change much for the mobile learning program.
“It’s an incremental gain that allows us to move incrementally forward,” Saltsman said. “The faster processor will allow more advanced learning apps to be constructed and the larger screen will allow for more data to be viewed on screen.”
The mobile program’s key findings were that the learning outcomes for those utilizing mobile devices and remote teaching pedagogy were significantly higher than their traditionally instructed counterparts. Students taught remotely demonstrated a better grasp of course content than those taught via traditional methods. From the amount of success that the mobile learning program has achieved, it’s likely the program will continue into the future.