Australia's University of Newcastle begins world's first university-wide Windows 10 rollout

Mark Coppock

If Microsoft is going to achieve its goal of a billion Windows 10 machines, then large organizations are going to need to adopt it sooner rather than later. It’s looking like enterprises are planning to adopt Windows 10 at a good clip, and that’s good news. Now, the Microsoft education blog is excited to announce the first university to make the switch to Windows 10.
Located down under, the University of Newcastle is starting a campus-wide rollout to Windows 10, and will have over 10,000 machines running Microsoft’s newest OS by the end of 2016. A pilot of 200 devices successfully demonstrated the utility of Windows 10, and the university plans an aggressive rollout of 3,000 machines by the start of the 2016 academic year, and an additional 7,000 machines for university staff.
University Associate Director of IT Client Services, Ann Walters, sees Windows 10 as important to the university’s goal of providing the best education to its students:

At UON we have the opportunity to make great strides over the next five years, and we’re looking forward to leveraging Windows 10 to provide the best possible learning environment for our students.
With 40,000 students and campuses stretching from Sydney to Tamworth and all the way to Singapore, having the best technology to enable collaboration and innovation is critical in driving productivity for both staff and students.

Windows 10 isn’t the only Microsoft investment the university is making in upgrading its computing environment. Office 365 is also on board, with students enjoying the full 1TB of OneDrive storage along with free Office downloads via Office 365 ProPlus. Should it pass through an ongoing pilot program, Skype for Business will become a key communications tool for students, and staff will enjoy the collaborative benefits of SharePoint Online.
Generally speaking, the university has some aggressive goals for utilizing Microsoft technology:

We moved to Office 365 as we saw a tremendous opportunity to enable our staff to collaborate both nationally and internationally. We see this increased collaboration as a way to accelerate their research efforts, something that is very important to us here. Research sits at the heart of any university, therefore it’s critical that we enable our researchers with the right tools to take us one step closer to achieving the ambitious goals we’ve set for UON.
The University of Newcastle is set to achieve great things through its digital strategy. By optimising 21st century skills with Windows 10 and cloud solutions, UON is in a great place to lead a highly competitive industry.

Seeing a major university implement Windows 10 campus-wide seems like a significant step in Microsoft’s strategy of making its newest operating system the ubiquitous choice.