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Qualcomm helps boost China IT education

Posted: 13 Nov 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:wireless? IT education? China?

Qualcomm Inc. and Beijing Peking University Unity Microsystems Technology Co. Ltd (PKUnity), a Chinese high-tech enterprise engaged in home-grown CPU development and system design, have entered the third phase of the Connected Computer Classroom program.

Supported by Qualcomm's global Wireless Reach initiative, this program is intended to further develop IT infrastructure and narrow the digital divide for local primary and secondary schools in underserved communities. The initiative provides schools with wireless Internet capability through computers utilizing CDMA2000 1X wireless telecommunication technology and PKUnity's innovative home-grown CPU technology.

"It has been a great honor for PKUnity to help energize the development of basic education through this program with Qualcomm by integrating both companies' technology," said Xu Cheng, chairman of PKUnity. "The Connected Computer Classroom Program is an important tool for Chinese schools that lack wireline broadband access. It directly benefits teachers and students in underdeveloped areas by supplying them with advanced multimedia network computers and wireless Internet access."

"We are pleased to have the opportunity to cooperate with PKUnity, a Chinese company with the spirit of home-grown innovation, in actively promoting China's educational development through technology," said Irwin Mark Jacobs, chairman of Qualcomm. "Participating in education projects is an important element of Qualcomm's Wireless Reach initiative, as we believe education is a key factor in increasing enjoyment of life and improving economic levels. The expansion of the Connected Computer Classroom Program is an important step in fulfilling Qualcomm's commitment to China."

Qualcomm and PKUnity launched the Connected Computer Classroom program with the suggestion and guidance of the high-tech department of the Ministry of Science and Technology of China in early 2007. The program's goal is to install multimedia network computer classrooms with wireless Internet access in China's underdeveloped areas in the central and western regions and provide teacher training and technology services for free. With PKUnity networked computers providing multimedia education and CDMA2000 1X wireless technology enabling Internet access, the program integrates and highlights the technological advantages of both organizations.

The first phase of the program installed multimedia network computer classrooms with wireless Internet equipment in eight schools in rural areas in Chongqing, Jiangxi and Yunnan and provided in-depth training for teachers. A special school in Beijing that serves the children of migrant workers was also provided with the system. Based on positive feedback from these schools, the two companies have, in cooperation with the China Children and Teenagers' Fund, carried out the second phase of the project and expanded the program to 18 additional schools in Xinjiang, Qinghai, Gansu, Shaanxi, and Sichuan. Six of the 18 schools are in Deyang city and Mianyang city, Sichuan province; both cities were affected by the 8.0 magnitude earthquake on May 12, 2008. The third phase of the program will target the central and western regions in China and add 12 more schools to the program.

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