Student transporters interested in adding internet access for students to complete homework on school buses will have the option of the first LTE router with “Wave 2” Gigabit Wi-Fi for faster speeds.
Kajeet and partner Cradlepoint announced the enhancements to the SmartBus product last week. The companies said more students can connect to Wi-Fi at one time and receive more bandwidth on multiple networks. The filtered Kajeet SmartBus solution relies on an updated Cradlepoint COR IBR900 router.
“SmartBus improvements with faster education broadband provide students the quick, safe access they need to succeed,” said Kajeet CEO and Founder Daniel Neal. “Students can spend more time on task and focus on learning, without worrying about slow or unreliable connectivity on their way to and from school, athletic games, and educational events. Kajeet aims to provide the best access to connect students to their educational resources outside the classroom.”
Student transporters say the opportunity for students to work on assignments while riding the school bus is a leading benefit of Wi-Fi, according to a survey conducted last year by School Transportation News for Kajeet. Magazine readers also said Wi-Fi can lead to fewer onboard student behavior issues while increasing school bus driver retention because they are less distracted and frustrated behind the wheel.
Eight percent of school administrators indicated that coverage is a top need for school bus Wi-Fi, with 69 percent desiring high-connection speed. Kajeet said the new SmartBus upgrade is the result.
Kajeet also said it now partners with AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon for 4G LTE wireless access, which has not only doubled the company’s network partners but also expanded its coverage. And the new COR IBR900 router increases speeds to close “the homework gap,” said Tony Puopolo, vice president of North America channel sales for Cradlepoint.
He added explained that the router includes dual SIM support, allowing school districts to use and change between two separate wireless networks. For example, the router can detect if one network is stronger than the other and automatically switch the connection. With the additional carriers, school districts choose the carrier – or carriers – that provide the strongest coverage in their area with the complete Kajeet Education Broadband connectivity package.
Kajeet said it is the largest provider of managed and filtered school bus Wi-Fi service as it has over 70 school districts customers in 31 states.