Does anyone have experience with both Promethean and SmartBoard to compare the two? Our school has dipped a toe in the water and is wanting to go much deeper, therefore we're looking for further information. Is there a preference for younger and older primary children?

I've heard there have been problems with SmartBoard. Any comments?

The fact that Smart notebook software can be freely used by anyone is an important factor for teachers preparing lessons at home.

7th April 2009.
I should add that Promethean now have released Inspire that can be freely loaded to ANY computer and can be used with ANY interactive whiteboard and can read several (all?) other IWB brand files, which at least puts them at level-pegging in terms of access to the software.

Later:
The Promethean 'free' software is limited in what it can do. It does not allow you to create lessons, which destroys its usefulness for me.

Tags: IWB, Promethean, Smart, iboards

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Okay. It is an online version. You have to upload your files first. That's the negative.
I tried to upload two files but I had error messages each time.
The software is still in Beta late July.
UPDATE: I decided to get the SMART Response system, and I am extremely pleased with how easy the "clickers" are to use. My students love them. I appreciate all the helpful information that people gave me in their replies to my original posting.
I'm enchanted by 'clickers' but I recall they are expensive.
Good day to all,

I have read some of your discussions and i wanted to let you know that you can also look at Panasonic Interactive boards.
This works well in Australia and in Europe and in Japan.
Pansaonic will be introducing the new Elite board in a couple of months.
This is in between a smart and a Promethean Board.
It has intergrated speakers and is a touch screen smaller pens comparing to our current Interactive board.
If you need more info please don't hesitate to write.
I am the Regional Manager in Quebec, Canada but we are worldwide.
Have a great day all !!
I would be very interested in getting your feedback. My partners and I have developed a new community for teachers and students called StudyBuddyCampus. It is free and it represents our vision of the future for the use of technology in the classroom. Our goal is to revolutionize the delivery of education by combining an interactive game like experience with the latest educational content. We have several teachers and students testing our Beta site at http://www.studybuddycampus.com, and we are constantly releasing new features. Given the topic of your discussion, I thought you might be interesting in taking a look, and if you have the time, we would love to receive feedback from people with your kind of experience.

Best Regards.

In our system, we are using the Promethean IWBs and the teachers love them.  However, many only scratch the surface of really using the boards how they are intended.  We are pushing them every day to allow the students to take control of the learning.  The voting devices are a great addition.   They are really what get the kids and teachers excited about the IWBs. 

Our teachers’ main complaint is projector bulbs.  When the projector bulbs blow, they have to wait for a replacement.  This basically renders the board useless until the bulb is replaced.  Usually the IWB is right in the middle of the room, so you have to continue on either side to continue teaching.  So, we began to take a look at the Brightlink short-throw projectors.  They use a pen like the Promethean boards but their image can be displayed on a regular dry erase board.  So, if the bulb blows, you can still use the board.  So far it seems to be working out. 

Recently our district has ordered several of the Mimio Teach.  It is a magnetic bar that snaps to the surface of a white board transforming it into an interactive board.  It can be easily shared between staff because all you need to do is download the software, plug in the the wireless usb hub and then snap the bar on your board.  They are about $800.  They work just as well as any interactive whiteboard I have used.  Another great feature is that you can use your dry erase markers without fear of ruining an expensive board.  I am not completely sold on  the software, therefore many of our staff members use the E-Instruction or Activ Inspire software.

While my only experience with the two different brands is from seeing them used in the classroom, I feel like the Promethean boards are more versatile and their software seems to be much more beneficial for especially elementary school classrooms. In my school system Smart Boards are used in math and science classes while Promethean Boards are used in English and special area classes. 

We feel that the SMARTBoard companion software, SMART NOtebook- is what drives the product.  It is SOOOOOOOO fabulous - it makes the SMARTBoard the top purchase.

Anybody has never tested multiCLASS interactive whiteboard? It can function under any software. It has resistive technology and is quite cheap. It's an european brand. We have had very good result with it. I recommend it to you. 

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