Survey Finds 78 Percent of School IT Managers are Already Testing iPads

Last Thursday, a group of educational publishers, technology companies, and government agencies held a meeting in Washington to discuss the logistics of shifting students in K-12 classrooms from traditional textbooks to digital textbooks within the next five years, which seems like a massive undertaking.

According to a survey by Piper Jaffray, reported by AllThingsD, such a shift might not be such a difficult task after all, because out of 18 public-school IT managers surveyed, 78 percent of them are already testing the iPad or the Chromebook.

Both Google and Apple are after the educational market, and it seems that Apple’s iPad is in the lead over Google’s Chromebook. While IT managers are divided over whether the Chromebook or the iPad is the better choice, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster believes that Apple would have an edge if schools adopt a “bring your own device policy” because the younger market has a clear preference for Apple’s devices.

“Given iPad’s current majority market share among teens (70 percent of teen tablet owners owned iPads), we expect iPad would be the device most likely desired by students in choosing their own devices. … Ultimately we expect school ‘bring your own device’ policies paired with the popularity of iPads among teens will lead to the iPad owning the educational tablet market.”

IT managers top concerns for the iPad include device management and the inability to use flash websites, while the flexibility and access to information were touted as significant features. With the Chromebook, IT managers cited software and web reliance as the major hurdles of adoption, while device management was the desired key feature.

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