Macbook Air

If you’re looking at using iPads in your school you’ll also need a Mac to manage them. Which Mac is best for you?

There’s some confusion over which Mac or Macbook is best to purchase to manage iPads. As far as I’m aware Apple hasn’t released an official specification for Macs running Apple Configurator. Some suppliers I’ve spoken to insist that a new Mac desktop is required, while others claim low end Macbooks will work just as well. Which is true?

In my experience any Mac capable of running OSX 10.8 or later will work with Apple Configurator. The actual process of configuring and managing iPads through Apple Configurator isn’t that taxing on the Mac. As long as Apple Configurator installs and runs it should work fine. In fact, I much prefer to use a Macbook to manage my iPads as you can take it to the iPads rather than having to get the trolley to a stationary Mac desktop.

At the time of writing the following Macs can run OSX 10.8:

  • iMac (Mid 2007 or newer)

  • MacBook (Late 2008 Aluminium, or Early 2009 or newer)

  • MacBook Pro (Mid/Late 2007 or newer)

  • MacBook Air (Late 2008 or newer)

  • Mac mini (Early 2009 or newer)

  • Mac Pro (Early 2008 or newer)

  • Xserve (Early 2009)

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About Author

Profile photo of Karl Rivers

Karl is an award winning Director of IT for the Royal Grammar School Guildford, based near London, England. He has been working in education for more than ten years and founded ClassThink in 2013 to share technology best practice with other schools. In 2014 he won the NAACE Impact Award for support services in schools, and writes edtech articles for Education Executive Magazine.

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