Cisco India opens the 'dwara' to remote education

11th March 2013
Cisco India opens the 'dwara'  to remote education

Bangalore, March 12, 2013: Global connectivity leader Cisco’s India end has developed a Live Remote Education Platform for Indian Classrooms. This collaborative, cloud-based video interaction solution will enable efficient delivery of education and skills development courses across the country, facilitating inclusive growth and empowering rural India.  Codenamed ‘Dwara’ (after the Sanskrit word for portal), the product is the first of Cisco’s ‘Internet of Everything’ solutions from India. Helping connect the unconnected, this solution will enable vast rural populations to access expert teachers and master trainers.

Dwara is part of the Cisco Education Enabled Development 2700 (CEED is the second product to be launched from Cisco's India site with the intent of driving innovation from India to the rest of the world. It is a comprehensive integrated and open learning platform designed to utilize Cisco® Collaboration suite to deliver cloud-driven live and hosted video and other content. With the enablement of remote teaching and learning, every rural school can now offer the same level of expert teaching that is available only to children in cities.  Similarly, the solution brings the skills of master trainers to youth in remote areas. An expert teacher or master trainer can bring in multiple classes in remote areas and teach them complex concepts as if he or she were right before the classes. The students can also ask real-time questions as if the teacher is in the class before them. By preserving this real-time interactive user experience, ‘CEED’ is an apt vehicle to bring advanced education and critical livelihood---generating job skills to populations in remote areas.

The CEED hardware is ruggedized and designed for harsh environments where temperature and dust can be high. It is energy efficient, using 40 percent less power and thus proving ideal for rural environments. With a built-in router that also acts as a Wi-Fi access point, a computer, and projection device, this solution allows multiple students using devices like the Akash tablet that the government of India (GoI) is trying to develop, to share a single Internet connection. It can also facilitate connections to well-known education portals such as the one produced by GoI’s National Information Centre (NIC).

Says Aravind Sitaraman, Cisco’s  President, Inclusive Growth: “CEED is Cisco’s first step towards bringing inclusive growth to rural areas using the latest technology at extremely affordable prices. It has the potential to revolutionize learning and skills development in this country and help the nation leapfrog several generations to realize its dream of becoming a developed nation by 2050.  For a fast developing nation like India, inclusive growth is key. We are probably the first company in the world to have a business unit focused on creating technologies and solutions to bring inclusive growth to under-served populations. We are very proud to have developed this product from our site in India and simultaneously realize our vision to bring cost of technology in education down to a very affordable USD 1 per child per month.”