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Finger-touch interactivity, mobile device integration and ultra-short-throw projection are fuelling an unstoppable trend in UK schools. Epson’s Jon Moore looks at how introducing finger-touch can make collaborative learning simple while saving costs along the way

✥ Independent Education Today: Are Interactive whiteboards in classrooms here to stay? John Moore: It may have become more interactive, but life in classrooms is never static. For the past decade interactive whiteboards have been installed in classrooms and helped a generation of students learn via advanced teaching methods unheard of 10 years ago. Despite this, the demand for the integration of mobile devices and for new kinds of content is creating a thirst for new, more versatile hands-on technology fit for progressive classrooms of the 21st century.

✥ IET: What is driving this change? JM: At the vanguard of that change is the ultra-short-throw interactive projector. Enhanced by ultra-short- throw technology as well as by brighter, more efficient 3LCD optical engines, it’s a shift that’s being driven by Epson, which already has 76% share of the ultra-short-throw interactive brand share in Europe and the Middle East.

✥ IET: What are the latest developments in interactive projectors? JM: Epson is at the forefront of some exciting new technology that culminates in mobile device integration and finger-touch technology. Finger-touch means that anyone can interact with a presentation without having to search for an interactive pen. Teachers and students need use only a finger to annotate, underline or write onto any image, slide, graph – and even video. Finger-touch interactivity can be used to enlarge or reduce, rotate, and move around diagrams and objects on screen. As useful for classrooms as for small groups and during one-to-one learning, finger-touch makes collaborative learning and peer assessment simple.

✥ IET: Why is finger-touch so great for schools? JM: Finger-touch is all about instant interactivity using natural gestures. Teachers will find finger-touch incredibly useful for quickly emphasising a point or providing additional notes during class. There are other advantages over interactive whiteboards that are allowing them to overtake them in modern teaching environments. Perhaps most crucial of all is reduced cost of ownership, and a projector’s ability to display and integrate a wide range of content, and moderator functions

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through compatible software.

✥ IET: So how can it help cut costs? JM: If you compare the cost of finger- touch with installing both an interactive white board and a projector, you could save your school around £1200. Now you only need one unit simplifying operation, maintenance and training. Three-year education warranties, upgradeable to five years, are available following registration and lamp life is now increased to 6000 hours with replacement lamps outside of the warranty period only costing around £50.

✥ IET: Which Epson projectors have finger- touch? JM: Finger-touch can be found on Epson’s EB-595Wi ultra-short-throw projector. This is a uniquely flexible and versatile WXGA resolution projector which uses 3LCD technology to deliver superb white and colour brightness. Its ultra-short- throw design minimises shadows and glare. Equipped with the latest version of Epson’s Easy Interactive Tools software, the EB-595Wi boasts the ultimate combination of both dual interactive pens and finger-touch interactivity. Complete with optional Wi-Fi to show content easily from a range of smart devices using Epson’s iProjection app, the finger-touch friendly EB-595Wi is the most advanced interactive teaching solution yet. iE

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