Confused with the term ‘eduPERIPHERALS’? Maybe, we haven’t heard it or used it anywhere; but as they say, there is always the first time for everything! digitalLEARNING is known for bringing out new things, so let us coin-in a new phrase now! Abha Garyali from Elets News Networks (ENN) brings out the growing popularity and future growth prospects of the eduPERIPHERAL industry, straight from (as they say) the ‘horse’s mouth’
eduPERIPHERALS, as the term suggests stands for the PERIPHERALS which have proven their worth in the education system. As PERIPHERALS include a wide array of auxiliary devices, connected to the Personal Computer in any way so it’s more logical not to include them by large. In the article, we would be emphasising on largely the PERIPHERALS used in the modern Learning- Teaching process, ie- Personal Computers, Laptops, Smart Phones, Tablets, Interactive Screens and Interactive Pens.
eduPERIPHERALS as Marketing Differentiators
It has been a decade of using personal computers in schools, but there is a large difference now. As compared to earlier, where PCs were just used in computer classes, now everything from A to Z is being done on computers. It’s not just PCs but also laptops as well as mobile phones and tablets, which are making a huge difference.
According to a recent study, Indian users, spend more than 4 hours every day, on an average, with their smartphones. Therefore, it is high time that the same mobile phones are used to revolutionise the Indian education sector!
Moreover, any nation’s progress depends on the system of education adopted by it to prepare the next generation. With the proliferation of peripherals in all walks of life, it was need of the hour for the education system in India to remodel and upgrade its delivery system.
Nothing but mobile phones, tablets, laptops etc can help in the quick conceptualisation of smart education systems. This can be mainly attributed to the fact that India is now the second largest smartphone market in terms of active unique smartphone users, with the total base crossing 220 million users, according to a new report from Counterpoint Research. The research firm’s data showed that in India LTE shipments reached 32 Million units in 2015, while smartphone shipments crossed 100 million for all of 2015. The last quarter saw smartphone shipments in India grow at 15 per cent annually.
Talking about tablets, making waves in the education system, in a recent news, in Hyderabad, many pre-school chains have made it compulsory for parents to buy tablets for their kids who are in play school or studying in classes till UKG. This shows the dependency that teaching can have on tablets. According to market reports, India saw sales of about 475,000 units of media tablets in the last calendar year. As stated in a report from research firm ‘Frost & Sullivan’, the tablet PC user base in India has increased from 60,000 units in 2010 to 300,000 in 2011. The report further says that overall tabletPC user base is likely to grow at a CAGR of 107 per cent to reach 23.38 million by 2017.
It is need of the hour for the education system in India to remodel and upgrade its delivery system, because India is now the second largest smartphone market in terms of active unique smartphone users, with the total base crossing 220 million users, according to a new report from Counterpoint Research
Salient Features vis-á-vis Educational Usage
eduPERIPHERALS need to have few basic features to prove their worthfulness, especially in the education system. Some of these are mentioned below:
Pricing range: Being for specially the students, the price of the PERIPHERALS is most important. Small kids as well as higher education students cannot afford very expensive smartphones, laptops, tablets etc. Therefore, good brands are launching reasonably priced products.
Financing Schemes: Financing options should be available to students so that buying becomes convenient for them.
Robustness: Being for students, these PERIPHERALS need to be essentially robust in their handling. Water-resistant, drop-resistant, shock-proof gadgets are being manufactured.
Key Features: Any eduPERIPHERAL should include key features like good battery life, storage drive, easy keypad, network connectivity etc.
After-Sales support: PERIPHERALS like mobile phones, tablets etc need to have support throughout from the manufacturer so that consumers (students) do not have a tough time.
Government Policies to Boost eduPERIPHERALS
With the present government totally involved in transformational programmes like Digital India, Make in India, Skill India, Startup India, Standup India and smart cities for changing the face of the nation, many initiatives have been taken for making India ‘Digital’. One of the most prominent among them is the setting up of the ‘National Program on Technology Enhanced Learning (NPTEL)’ by the ministry of human resources development. The aim of NPTEL was to develop curriculum based video lectures and web courses to enhance the quality of engineering education in India.
In another scheme in UP, under the Akhilesh Yadav Government, laptops were freely distributed among students for developing the laptop culture.
Moreover, initiatives by Educational as well as Corporate are also being made for digitizing India. Pearson Education, HCL Infosystems and Aakash Educational Services Limited (AESL) are some of the few companies who have specially launched their tablets for educational purposes. While talking about corporates boosting eduPERIPHERALS, name of Microsoft India can not be left out. Microsoft, since 25 years, has been running several initiatives in India and partnering with students, educators, school leaders as well as with governments and communities to transform education through effective technology, pedagogical innovation and best practices. Microsoft has collaborated with third-party Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to offer highly subsidized Windows tablets and PCs running free software to help state governments across India in providing students with a window into a new world. Windows software is free for OEMs manufacturing devices that are under 9 inches in size. Microsoft has also partnered with the Government of Meghalaya to create digital classrooms, and contribute to their vision of expanding digital literacy.
According to market reports, India saw sales of about 475,000 units of media tablets in the last calendar year. As stated in a report from research firm Frost & Sullivan, the overall tablet PC user base is likely to grow at a CAGR of 107 per cent to reach 23.38 million by 2017
Trend of Refurbished eduPERIPHERALS
Everything starts and ends with only one thing- COST factor! Especially in the education scenario, being cost effective makes the product popular initially. However, getting great quality at a reasonable price is somewhat dicey and many students make their parents spend a lot on buying expensive gadgets. Keeping this in view there is growing demand for refurbished eduPERIPHERALS. These professionally restored devices ensure that you always get top-notch performance along with availing brand warranty on them. Now, due to increasing popularity many big brands along with specially created websites take pride in giving easy access to a long list of quality assured refurbished phones and tablets at the most reasonable prices.