>Smartmatic selects Dell to Aid 2010 elections

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The Commission on Elections (COMELEC) solicited the help of Smartmatic in supplying over 2,500 laptop computers, which were used in the first automated election last May 10. The Dell Latitude laptops were utilized during the election management and preparation, in previous field tests, and on Election Day.

Smartmatic is a multinational technology company that designs, provides and deploys technological solutions that help government to endow their processes with transparency and efficiency, and to improve existing systems or processes.

Convenience and transparency

Being the first automated election in the Philippines, it was necessary to choose the best computer available to ensure success. Dell Latitude laptops were selected primarily because of their ability to withstand heavy use, hundreds of tests, frequent transportation, rough handling, and the extreme weather conditions in the Philippines, with the prime directive of guaranteeing the protection of the official election data.

In terms of convenience, Smartmatic found the features of the Latitude laptops to be invaluable. The crisp screens and keyboard size enabled the electoral personnel to work comfortably without the need of additional accessories, such as large monitors and external pointing devices. Managing information was also quick and accurate because of Intel-based processors, which provided the power needed to run database and application systems.

Surviving the challenges of automated elections

Although Dell’s laptop computers provided flawless service, they were not spared from the challenges brought about by the first automated elections in the country. One main challenge regarding the portable equipment was in cloning all the systems in order to have the same audited base image to start the configuration and personalization process in all the official equipment. The compatibility of Smartmatic’s cloning solution and the hardware managed to make the cloning process a success.

All in all, the support provided by Dell allowed Smartmatic to save time, allowing its technical support group to focus on platform tests and adjustments rather than the infrastructure.
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