IPOH: Having a smartphone is better than not having one at all, says Datuk Saarani Mohamad (pic).
The Perak Mentri Besar said the smartphones, which were a donation from YTL Foundation to the state, were good enough to be used for online learning.
“I am not sure why someone would question it because it is free.
“YTL came to us, wanting to collaborate and donate the phones to the B40 (lower-income) group so students can use it for online learning and not get left behind,” he said during a press conference held via Zoom yesterday.
“State education executive council member Ahmad Saidi Mohamad Daud has checked the phones and they are suitable to be used for online learning.
“The phones have 1GB RAM and 8GB memory and also come with a 12-month data plan,” he said, adding that it was not nice to reject the good gesture by YTL Foundation.“If not for the YTL Foundation, thousands of students will be without,” he added.
The state government plans on giving out 20,000 smartphones to students from the B40 group to complement the “Tuisyen Cikgu Saarani” programme.
Saarani said about 100,000 units of phones have already been distributed to students nationwide.
“Many students are using it now. I am thankful to YTL Foundation and the state welcomes more companies who want to collaborate or make a contribution to us to help the needy,” he said.
When contacted, a 17-year-old student, who wished to remain anonymous, said he was waiting to receive the smartphone from the state.
“I was told that I should be getting it soon. I don’t mind if the phone is ‘low spec’ as long as I am getting one that will aid me in my studies,” he said.
“Currently, I am using my sister’s and my mother’s old phones for my online classes.
“The phones can be slow at times, sometimes due to bad Internet connectivity, but it’s still workable,” he added.