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Promethean ActivInspire

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Promethean released their ActivInspire edition of their Interactive Whiteboard software.  As I’ve said before, this piece of software can be bought for any interactive whiteboard and not just the Promethean board.  At the minute it costs £99 sterling for the full version but existing ActivPrimary users can download it for free.

So, what’s new?  To be honest, at first glance, there isn’t a big difference.  The main one that one would notice at first is the ability to interchange between a primary school version (bright, colourful buttons) and second level version (more MS Windows like).  There are other additions – you can import Smart Notebook files and use them, which is handy.  You can integrate it with Promethean’s other products like the slate and the activExpressions.  There are more built in tools and games, videos and graphics so that’s all good.  There’s also better navigation and scripting for the advanced user.

However, there are two things that would almost stop me from upgrading and they both are in the Resource Library.  The search function to find graphics, video, etc. is gone so you now have to manually figure out where your resources are stored.  Also, there are no thumbnails for sound and video so it’s very difficult to know what video does what.  If these functions do exist, I can’t find how to get at them.  I have voiced my concerns to Promethean so we’ll see if they respond.

Even so, ActivInspire is the best software out there for the Interactive Whiteboard due to its incredible power.  However, until they fix their resource finder, I’d stick with ActivPrimary for the moment.

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