Back in the days before educational technology, some kids would bring an apple to school to impress the teacher. But soon, because of advances in digital education, a different kind of Apple might be more common.
The iPad’s popularity at home means that it can be easily converted into a learning platform. Sales of tablets in general have been incredible. In 2013 alone, worldwide tablet sales grew by 70%, and Apple had the largest share of the market at about 36%.
How suitable are tablets for digital education? As a way of displaying digital content, they are ideal. Their relatively large size makes reading easy, and a growing number of K12 educational apps take advantage of this fact. The intuitive interface is great for e-learning, while tablets are some of the most useful educational technology devices for handicapped students.
On the downside, tablets are not so appropriate for some vital K12 activities. Typing is a particular soft spot, although it can be addressed by adding a keyboard to the learning platform suite. In addition, some students may sneakily use entertainment apps, rather than the digital content which they should be studying. Finally, iPads have some specific disadvantages because they lack support for Flash-based digital content, personalized login capabilities, or USB devices.
What does this all mean for users of educational technology? It shows that they should be prepared for whatever comes along with a learning platform that is device agnostic. Maybe tablets will be the ultimate e-learning device, but with so much development in the digital education industry going on, the best bet is to keep an open mind – and system.