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SMC launches technology store

Angela Saoud | Thursday, August 28, 2003

A new addition to Saint Mary’s is now open for business.

The campus iStore, located in the Information Technology office, offers students, faculty and staff educationally-priced computers, software, Nextel cellular service and other peripherals.

“The feedback I’ve received has been very positive,” said Keith Fowlkes, Saint Mary’s director of Information Technology. “Most people who bought through us are finding that they are having far fewer problems with their computers.”

If there is a problem with something bought from the iStore, a technician will be sent out to fix it.

“It takes the worry out of buying a computer for college,” Fowlkes said.

The Saint Mary’s campus is progressively transferring from Dell computers to Omni Tech computers. These machines are specifically designed for Saint Mary’s campus. All of the equipment in the iStore is tested by Information Technology and compatible with Resnet.

“The Omni Tech computers are a brand that might not be familiar to many people, but they have great prices, service and support,” said Fowlkes.

In addition to the lower prices of computers, the iStore is selling Nextel cellular phones and service at a discounted price. Nextel cellular phone and accessory prices are discounted 27 percent while cellular phone service is 10 percent less than that of normal Nextel rates.

Toshiba notebook computers have been the most popular selling item thus far, Fowlkes said. The iStore also reports selling an equal amount of Macintosh and PC computers.

Although the iStore is primarily targeting new students, Fowlkes is hoping to attract returning students to the store as well.

“We’re going to be having promotional events in December and near the end of the year,” Fowlkes said.

During promotional events, the iStore will open its mobile kiosk in LeMans Hall’s Reinbeaux Lounge.

Although the main clientele to the iStore are students, faculty and staff of Saint Mary’s, the iStore is open to the larger community.

“We’re more than willing to take customers from the Notre Dame and Holy Cross communities,” Fowlkes said.