Teachers: Should You Allow Smartphones in Class?

There’s a movement about called BYOT (Bring Your Own Technology) that suggests in-class mobile learning might be the wave of the future.  Some educators see it as a way to add extra learning layers to class time. Some are exploring response-type apps as an alternative to paper tests, and many are using the opportunity to learn more about mobile technology, themselves.


As with any new development, there are policy issues that come up — some kids who don’t own devices, rules to limit texting and gaming in class are needed, and teacher education is a plus. In the long run, smartphone classrooms may leap to the forefront in terms of student aptitude, and the challenges of establishing boundaries are outweighed by the benefits.

How can you be a cutting-edge mobile learning teacher?

  • Set aside certain class periods as a time for students to use mobile technology to find answers. Be sure students and parents know in advance which class meetings will be smartphone sessions, so they can adjust parental blocking for that hour.
  • Establish a Facebook page for your class, and encourage students to communicate among themselves about current subjects. Strict rules for posting should allow only for informative, positive communications. Monitor the page closely.
  • Find an educational app that supports and enhances one of your subjects. Set aside class time for students to work with the app and talk about what they’ve learned. Be sure parents are involved in downloading or, at least, approve the download.
  • Encourage students to tweet throughout a film or lecture, with the goal of teaching others through posting comments and insights about what they’re learning at the moment. This is an excellent teaching tool, if used with constraint and planning, because it requires students to pay close attention. Show the live tweet stream on a large screen for those who aren’t tweeting.
  • In upper grades, encourage students to snap a photo of your whiteboard notes, so they’ll have a copy to study along with their own notes. Or, better yet, take a photo of your board and either post it on the class’s Facebook page or send to the class email list.

Getting parents involved is key

Especially in lower grade levels, parents or guardians need to take an active role in their kids’ use of smartphones. Parent teacher conferences should include a technology segment to explore how involved parents are in their kids’ smartphone activities, and discuss how they might use them as learning tools.

  • Organize a discussion for parents about smartphone safety and security at school. Present facts and ideas about smartphones in the classroom to your school’s PTA meetings or call a parent gathering.
  • Send home a copy of the Mobile Contract with each student.  Ask that the contract, or a copy of it, be returned to you with signatures after it’s been discussed at home, so you’ll know the students’ mobile restrictions.

Be sure your students know how to stay safe on their smartphones.

Kids need to know the rules for safe smartphone behaviors. Teachers are in a perfect position to raise awareness about security, using posters, mottos, messages and the materials offered by NCSA. Student reminders can include:

  1. Keep your phones “clean” and updated. Never send texts or photos that could compromise your privacy.
  2. We’re all entitled to privacy. Get permission before snapping and/or posting someone else’s photo.
  3. Don’t overshare on social network posts. You may attract unwanted friends.
  4. Don’t respond to texts or calls from anyone you don’t know.
  5. Keep your geo-location features in the off position unless they’re intentionally in use.
  6. Not all apps are safe. Learn to read permission screens and/or have parental approval before downloading apps.

We recognize that teachers often carry the double burden of teaching kids as well as educating their parents. We hope our learning materials and those from NCSA will be helpful in bringing mobile technology to the classroom in a responsible and constructive way.

Please share your ideas about using smartphones in the classroom.  Are you using mobile technology for teaching? Do you have some great ways of incorporating smartphones into your lessons?  We’d love to hear from you on our blog or Facebook page.

NQ Mobile’s Co-Visionaries — Dr. Henry Lin and Omar Khan

Pardon us for bragging, but profiles of our two top leaders been included in Mobile Village’s Visionary Profiles this week.

Dr. Henry Lin and Omar Khan, Co-CEOs at NQ Mobile are frequently recognized for their unique leadership qualities and innovative activities in the mobile industry. This year they’re in the running for Mobile Village’s 2012 Mobile Star Award. Mobile Village’s profile notes that they’re two people who are “making the world a safer place for people and their mobile devices.”

Under the leadership of Dr. Lin and Mr. Khan, NQ Mobile’s working to build a complete library of mobile solutions for a safer, more secure and private mobile experience. Mobile Village’s profile notes that Mr. Khan and Dr. Lin have spearheaded major industry security initiatives that affect us as consumers, and that also affect the industry as a whole. The two were fêted as “Mobilizers Under 40″ in Fortune Magazine’s annual “40 Under Forty” issue this year.

NQ Mobile’s cutting edge security products include our highly acclaimed NQ Mobile Security, NQ Mobile Vault, NQ Family Guardian and NQ Enterprise Shield.  We modestly like to remind our readers that these products offer the best mobile protection available.

When our leaders make the news, we’re happy to remind our readers that NQ Mobile, from our top leadership on down, is dedicated to providing the highest level of safety and security possible for the largest number of users.  Visit our website and take a look at our Mobile Family site for all the latest product information.  Your input is valuable – we’d love to hear from you on our blog, or our Facebook page.

NQ Mobile Security Now on Rugged Cat® Smartphones

Android-based Cat®B10 smartphones will now come pre-loaded with NQ Mobile’s award-winning security  product for top-quality protection against mobile threats. A three month trial of NQ’s premium security package will be available on all Cat B10 models shipped in the Americas.

The Cat B10 phones are “ruggedized” for heavy use in the field. Made to withstand blows, water and freezing temperatures, makers of the famous Caterpillar heavy equipment tout these phones as the logical choice for tough outdoor work. Likewise, NQ Mobile brings the most effective mobile security solution on the market to combat viruses, malicious URLs and all forms of malware, and we’re proud to be an global provider of products focused on security, privacy and productivity.

Our CEO, Omar Khan said, “NQ Mobile is pleased to associate with Cat® Phones to provide a solution to keep ruggedized devices safe and secure As more and more professionals who need rugged devices are connected to smartphones in the field, maintaining mobile security is increasingly essential. NQ Mobile is proud to be entrusted with protecting Cat phone users anytime, anywhere.”

Two rugged products rolled into one makes good sense. We’re happy to add Cat® as an NQ Mobile associate.

News release

Wireless + NQ = Mobile Security For More of Us

Read our press release.

More exciting news! NQ Mobile announced this week that we’ve partnered with another Verizon-authorized dealer, “Wireless,” in our ongoing efforts to get mobile security into the hands of as many smartphone users as possible.

Wireless will offer NQ Mobile Security, Vault for Android and Family Guardian at more than 80 retail locations across the country.  Shawn Cunix founded Wireless back in 2001 to provide Verizon Wireless services to central Ohio. Since then, Wireless has grown from one store to 80+ stores, with over 300 employees across the United States.

What does it mean for smartphone customers?

In our ongoing effort to educate and protect smartphone users, our new deal with Wireless will expose even more smartphone customers to the peace of mind our products provide.

“Retailers such as Wireless are essential collaborators in our efforts to protect mobile users throughout the U.S. “said Omar Khan, Co-Chief Executive Officer, NQ Mobile. “By educating their customers about the security, privacy and family mobile safety issues and offering access to solutions such as NQ Mobile’s, Wireless is taking an active role in protecting their customers vital mobile information.”

“Wireless recognizes that a safe mobile experience is essential for customers as data devices continue to increase in popularity and replace other connected devices,” said Anthony Snare, Director, Wireless.  “We are thrilled to partner with a global leader in mobile security solutions, which allows us to offer unparalleled security, privacy and family protection services for our Verizon mobile products nationwide.”

Why NQ Mobile?

NQ Mobile Guard detects and deletes viruses, malicious URLs, and other threats before a user even knows they exist. NQ Mobile’s security technology, outperformed all competitive mobile security platforms in a West Coast Labs Comparative Test. Our security technology was also a top performer in effectiveness, with a 99 percent malware detection rate, in research conducted by AV-TEST Institute, a leading international and independent service provider in the fields of IT security and anti-virus research.

NQ Mobile Vault for Android, launched earlier this year, has become a top app on Google Play with an average user rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars. The app lets consumers password- protect and encrypt photos, videos and other sensitive information on their smartphones.

Our newest product, NQ Family Guardian, is a unique parental mobile management suite for safety and monitoring. Family Guardian’s a mobile app that’s downloaded and installed on the child’s smartphone, as well as a web-based control center that’s accessible from any desktop or mobile browser.  The app’s currently available for Android devices, while the control-center is compatible with any web browser.


Today Ars Technica reported that as many as 185 million smartphone users could expose their online banking and personal data through apps that have inadequate encryption protection — disturbing news for Android users.

Computer science researchers at two German universities identified 41 applications in Google’s Play Market that “leaked sensitive data as it traveled between handsets on the Ice Cream Sandwich version of Android and webservers for banks and other online services.”

Researchers were able to obtain bank account information and payment credentials for services such as PayPal and American Express, as well as info from Facebook, email messages, IP cameras and remote servers.

The results of the study were presented at this week’s Computer and Communications Security conference in North Carolina. Considering the number of apps being developed and released on the market every day, it’s not surprising there are glitches and loopholes, but it’s a bit unnerving to glimpse the depth of the potential for security breaches in apps we use every day.

We have tips. Lots of them.  But, here are a few of the most important ways to protect your safety and security on your smartphone:

1)     Always have a powerful mobile security app downloaded into your smartphone.  We can’t stress this strongly enough. A simple-to-use app like NQ Mobile Security will prevent others from violating your privacy, and will catch problems before they ever reach your handset.

2)     Use unique passwords for your financial transactions, and change them frequently. Let your phone lock after even short periods of idleness.

3)     Don’t overshare on Facebook. Ever.

4)     Look for reviews on apps you want to download, and purchase them from reliable sources. Not all app developers are as conscientious about security as they might be. Let’s do our homework.

5)     Never ignore updates. Keep your equipment up to date and your system clear of unnecessary data.

It’s important to become educated about mobile security and safety. October is National Cyber Safety Awareness Month, and there are hundreds of resources available for families, educators and businesses for learning the best smartphone practices. Check out NCSA’s website for tips and learning materials, and see NQ Mobile’s Family  website for even more information on how to keep your family mobile-safe.

NQ Mobile and GoWireless – Teaming Up for Mobile Safety

Read our press release

GoWireless is one of the largest Verizon retailers in the country – and what have they done now? They’ve teamed up with NQ Mobile and are now offering some of our best products to their customers.  Committed to great customer service, John Salisbury, their Chief Operating Officer says, “We are delighted to be able to offer our customers the best mobile protection on the market with NQ Mobile Guard, NQ Mobile Vault for Android and NQ Family Guardian.”  With more than 350 stores across the country, we’re delighted that the folks at GoWireless have chosen to promote NQ Mobile’s apps.


One of the products GoWireless will be offering their customers is NQ’s Vault for Android.  A privacy app we launched earlier this year, Vault has an average user rating on Google Play of 4.5 out of 5 stars. Vault gives Android users a powerful privacy locker to protect photos and videos.  Password-protected and encrypted, Vault can’t be accessed by anyone else and, if someone tries to break in, the premium version snaps their photo without their knowledge. Brilliant.

Family Guardian

We can’t say enough about Family Guardian, our new parental mobile management suite for child safety and monitoring. It’s the complete safety package for parents who want to keep their smartphone-toting kids safe and secure.  It’s comprehensive, thoughtful and powerful – a major innovation in safety for kids and peace of mind for parents. We think Family Guardian is a ground-breaking innovation in mobile safety.  Don’t forget to check out our Mobile Family site for ideas, facts and tips about keeping your family mobile-safe.

Mobile Guard

Last, and certainly not least, our Mobile Guard is one of the leading mobile security products in the world.  We’re proud to say we’re now a leading provider of Freemium subscription services with approximately 200 million registered user accounts in over 150 countries.

We at NQ Mobile continue to spread the word about mobile safety in every way possible and we’re proud that great companies like GoWireless want to join us in that effort.  We’re all about raising public awareness about mobile safety, and we want to extend a hearty welcome to GoWireless  — we’re happy to have them on our team.

Read the press release about our new affiliation with GoWireless, and please feel free to leave comments on our blog, or join our discussions on Facebook.  We’d love to hear from you.