Every year new phones get released and they are pretty much the same cost as the year before. This tend to mask the overall fact that computing is getting cheaper, very quickly.
When you look at the cost of computers you should look at the cost to do a calculation, not the cost of the machine itself. If this year’s computer costs the same as last years and yet does double the calculations, then the cost per calculation has dropped by 50%. Because of Moore’s Law, this is pretty much what has been happening for the last 50 years.
One of the big initiatives in the public school system is to buy laptops and tablets for their students. Many times this flops because of a lack of followup support, or a lack of teacher training or any number of factors but I have been saying for a while that it’s a pointless task because they will become nearly free within the decade. Case in point:
What does that mean in reality? Well, the Raspberry Pi Foundation claims that performance is six times faster than the old model. Speaking to The Register, the company’s head Eben Upton explained that “it’s a usable PC now. It was always the case that you could use a Raspberry Pi 1 as a PC but you had to say ‘this is a great PC in so far as it cost me 35 bucks’. We’ve removed the caveat that you had to be a bit forgiving with it. Now it’s just good.”
And, somehow, it still costs just $35.
Microsoft has also announced their new Windows 10 will be free for the Raspberry Pi. That’s just really impressive. So keep in mind that in another few years this performance level will be nearly free. The thought of the public school leviathan trying to keep up with that technology curve is ludicrous. Just let the kids bring their own gear and focus on innovative teaching methods to use them.