Schools rapidly embracing tablet devices

The education subsector of the US tablet market has grown by an explosive 103% year-on-year during 2012, according to new IDC figures.

According to the figures, the growth of tablet computers helped to increase the volume of shipments of end-user devices (including tablets, notebooks and desktop PCs) in the US education sector up 15.3% year-on-year to 8.5 million units, despite weaker PC sales.

Tablets accounted for 35.4% of the market in 2012, up from 19.4% in 2011, with significant room for future growth.

“While tablet sales to the education sector doubled from 2011 to 2012, we are only seeing the beginning of a much greater push that is likely to last for years. As a result, we remain highly optimistic about sustained tablet growth in education, particularly as prices decline due to greater competition,” says David Daoud, research director of personal computers at IDC.

“Tablet vendors that expect to compete in the education market need to be thinking beyond just hardware speeds and feeds,” says Tom Mainelli, research director of tablets at IDC.

“We expect K-12 in particular to be at the centre of new innovations where partnerships between hardware makers, content owners, solution providers and others will lead to many new educational opportunities.”

The figures come as the battle for the education market intensifies between Google and Apple.

At this years’ Google I/O conference, the online services and mobile giant announced a new initiative to increase Nexus tablet sales in schools.

“Today we are excited to expand Google’s education offering by combining the ease and portability of Nexus tablets with highly engaging educational content,” Google said in a statement.

“Through this new program educators will be able to manage tablets and discover, purchase, and distribute content through Google Play for Education–whether they’re in charge of one classroom or one thousand.”


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