We increasingly operate in a multi-screen ecology, choosing the most appropriate devices for different purposes at different times. When educational institutions invest in mobile technologies, they often spend a great deal of time evaluating a range of devices. However, the devices themselves may matter less than their educational uses. This paper explores the case of an Aboriginal desert school in Western Australia which has adopted a mixture of XO laptops and, more recently, iPads. The background to the XO and iPad programmes is briefly outlined and the relative advantages and disadvantages of each device are indicated. It is demonstrated that, rather than the devices being in competition with each other, they are in many ways complementary. Teachers and students are able to work with both types of devices, as appropriate, to improve literacy, numeracy and other skills within a digital learning ecology.


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