Microsoft's Shape the Future: Getting kids started on Windows 8

Microsoft's Shape the Future: Getting kids started on Windows 8

Summary: Could Microsoft's Shape the Future program be an affordable way to give kids good computer equipment in schools -- and is it just about education?

TOPICS: Microsoft
shape the future windows 8 devices children uk schools

Microsoft, Intel and RM Education are joining forces to launch Shape the Future U.K.

The tech giants' scheme will result in children attending British schools -- as well as their teachers -- using a range of Windows 8 devices and software for personal and educational use.

The project's ethos is to "close the opportunity gap between rich and poor by putting technology in the hands of every child." From today, eligible government-funded U.K. schools will be able to buy laptops and tablets for up to 30% off the recommended retail price.

These devices, all supplied with the Windows 8 operating system, are available from RM Education. Every device is powered by Intel and comes with twenty licenses for education-based software. including Microsoft Office Professional and Kodu -- which makes the discount a decent deal for cash-strapped schools.

In order to qualify, the computers must be purchase with at least 50 percent of government funding.

"Shape the Future has the power to put knowledge in the hands of children,” said Joice Fernandes, Worldwide Leader of the Shape The Future Programme, Microsoft. "That knowledge empowers them to shape their own future. I passionately believe that Shape the Future is a true force for good -- as has been proven with our projects around the world. I'm thrilled that we are now bringing this programme to the U.K.”

Citing figures from Experian, Microsoft suggests that home access to a computer can result in an additional £300,000 of income over a child's lifetime, which amounts to £6.6 billion U.K.-wide. Whether this claim is true or not, giving more children access to their own computers can't hurt their educational prospects -- and from the angle of manufacturers offering a discount, it can't hurt to expose children early to a particular PC brand or the Windows 8 operating system either.

Image credit: Shape the Future

Topic: Microsoft

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  • Save a child from a lifetime of suffering

    Steer them away from Mocrosoft
    • Save the internet from childish troll...

  • To answer author's question...

    The program has nothing to do with education.

    The program is about new lock-in for the young generation.

    This is all about money - plain and simple.
    Solid Water
  • Microsoft's Shape the Future: Getting kids started on Windows 8

    Yes its all about education. Microsoft really does want to make a difference in the world.
    Loverock Davidson-
    • Don't you mean Re-Neducation

      "Microsoft really does want to make a difference in the world"

      Yes by making the poorer by overpaying for average software.
      Alan Smithie
      • Who said kids are poor ?

        And does it suffice to go to apple then ?
        Jitendra Singh G
  • Your Kids going to learn nothing about computers using Windows.

    Get them a Pi for a fraction of the cost.
    Alan Smithie
  • Until They Find This "Windows 8" Thingie Will Not Run On Their Raspberry Pi

    I can see a lot of disappointed kids wondering why Microsoft doesn't support low-cost computing. Why, Microsoft, why?
    • It's not up to MS to make the Raspberry PI Windows capable...

      The Raspberry PI developers should be the ones making those "PCs" Windows capable.

      And, eventually, those PI people might. MS might serve as a consultant to the project.
  • Easybits does it better

    I own Magic Desktop for over 4 years now and now the youngest is enjoying their latest version now. I have a ton of reasons why the kitchen PC shouldn't be used by the little one. So even if Microsoft were to make a Windows that truly caters to kids, it really leaves a lot of our recipes, budget, shopping sites and so forth accessible in some way or another. So I called them, they sent me to their website at and i got a new license. Now every PC at home has a kid profile that is truly locked and safe. That's why it's funny seeing people conjecture how Windows should be for kids, when that already exists for almost 10 years, according to their support guys. You should probably be writing an article about that instead.