Apple's iPad is Most Popular Tablet in Schools

Apple's iPad is Most Popular Tablet in Schools

In a surprisingly strong third quarter (ended July 1), Apple reported broad-based growth in units, revenue and market share for the iPad, including significant growth in the U.S. education market.

“iPad is the perfect tool for teaching in new and compelling ways, and our iPad results were especially strong in the U.S. education market, where sales were up 32% year over year to over 1 million units,” CEO Tim Cook said.

Citing data from NPD, Apple said the iPad had a 55% share of the U.S. tablet market, up from a 46% share one year ago. Also, the company produced eight of the 10 best-selling tablets.

Senior vice president and chief financial officer Luca Maestri attributed “the tremendous quarter for iPad in education” to the launch of a new version of the iPad in March, an update to the Classroom app and continued enhancements to iOS intended to make managing iPad in the classroom easier.

The St. Paul (MN) school district in Minnesota is renewing its 1:1 program and deploying more than 40,000 iPads to every student and teacher in the district. iPad was chosen because of its power and durability, ease of use, multimedia and accessibility features, and the extensive catalog of iOS apps designed specifically for education, according to Maestri.

The Shawnee Mission (KS) school district this year purchased 19,000 iPads, extending its 1:1 program started in 2014. Maestri attributed that sale to iPad's intuitive interface, superior reliability, and expansive ecosystem of iOS tools for education.

Apple reported selling 11.4 million units of the iPad, up 15% from the prior year. iPad sales grew in each geographic segment, with double-digit increases in the U.S., Japan, Germany, France and Greater China.

Apple’s Mac computers also had a strong quarter with overall revenue up 7% year-over-year, driven by the strength of the MacBook Pro and iMac and achieved despite IDC’s estimate of a 4% unit contraction in the global PC market.

Cook said the refresh of almost the entire Mac lineup in June positions Apple well for a strong start to the back-to-school season.

Coding in Schools 

“We believe that coding is an essential skill that all students should learn,” Cook said. “We're thrilled that over 1.2 million students of all ages are now using iPad and Swift Playgrounds to learn the fundamentals of coding.”

More than 1,000 K-12 schools across the United States plan to use Apple's Everyone Can Code in their curricula this fall, Cook said. For high school and community college students who want to pursue careers in the growing app economy, Apple announced app development with Swift, a full-year curriculum designed by Apple engineers and educators and provided free to schools to teach students to code and design fully functional apps, gaining job skills in software development and information technology.

In October of 2017, President Trump directed the department of education to devote a minimum of $200 million to promote high quality STEM education. The initiative comes as more technology companies emphasize coding as a workforce skill. 

More on Tablets in Schools 

More information on  educational tablets, e-readers and smartphones in U.S. K-12 schools and the extent of mobile device use in the classroom is available in Deployment of Tablets/Mobile Devices in K-12 Schools 2017.

Deployment of Tablets/Mobile Devices in K-12 Schools 2017 is the second in a series of reports from Simba Information providing information on how K-12 schools are supplementing traditional instructional materials in classrooms with growing implementations of technology.