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Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa tweeted several photos of a tablet that’s equipped with a keyboard and a stylus, which will be included as standard under the PerantiSiswa programme. — Picture via Twitter/Annuar Musa
Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa tweeted several photos of a tablet that’s equipped with a keyboard and a stylus, which will be included as standard under the PerantiSiswa programme. — Picture via Twitter/Annuar Musa

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KUALA LUMPUR, April 4 — Last month, the Communications and Multimedia Minister (MenKOMM) Tan Sri Annuar Musa announced B40 students studying in institutions of higher learning will soon be able to apply for tablets under the PerantiSiswa programme. The free tablet programme was announced during the tabling of Budget 2022 with a total allocation of RM450 million.

Several weeks ago, Annuar Musa shared that the tablets will be of good quality equipped with a minimum of a 10.1″ display and 4GB of RAM.— Picture via Twitter/Annuar Musa
Several weeks ago, Annuar Musa shared that the tablets will be of good quality equipped with a minimum of a 10.1″ display and 4GB of RAM.— Picture via Twitter/Annuar Musa

Yesterday, the minister tweeted several photos of a tablet that’s equipped with a keyboard and a stylus, which will be included as standard under the PerantiSiswa programme. The brand of the tablet in his tweet is still unknown but the keyboard looks like an OEM Bluetooth keyboard that can be purchased for less than RM100.

He said his ministry is working hard to complete the PerantiSiswa online portal which is expected to be open for applications on April 15, 2022. Several weeks ago, he shared that the tablets will be of good quality equipped with a minimum of a 10.1″ display and 4GB of RAM.

 

 

During the last press conference, he said students can submit their applications online from mid-April and the deliveries are expected to start in early June. This will be followed by the second phase of distribution which is expected to take place two months later, in August.

It is worth highlighting that the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) had earlier announced that the tablets will be offered via participating telcos which include Celcom, Digi, Maxis, U Mobile, TM and YTL Communications. It is likely that the tablets will be bundled with a data plan and a contract, similar to the Pakej Peranti Keluarga Malaysia.

When PerantiSiswa was first announced during the tabling of the budget in Parliament, Finance Minister Tengku Zafrul said the initiative will benefit 600,000 students.

However, the Communications Minister recently said that the programme will benefit 400,000 students, which is a reduction of 33 per cent. Assuming that the total budget allocation of RM450 million remains unchanged, the programme would be able to procure tablets at RM1,125 each. The tablets could be worth higher assuming that the telcos are also chipping in by subsidising the cost of the tablets further if they are tied on a contract.

 

 

Annuar Musa said the procurement of the tablets will be carried out in a transparent and meticulous manner. He also proposes to reserve 10 per cent of the tablets for special cases such as students in lower-income groups who are not under a diploma or bachelor’s degree category. This may include post-graduate students or Ph.D students who can’t afford devices.

Besides tablets, the government will soon offer RM150 eWallet credit to youths under the ePemula programme. Youths aged 18 to 20 years old, as well as full-time students in institutions of higher learning, will be able to redeem their eWallet credit from either BigPay, GrabPay, ShopeePay and Touch ‘n Go eWallet in mid-April. — SoyaCincau

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