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Futuresource Consulting, the specialist research and consulting company, is delighted to be the official knowledge partner for CEATEC. The company can trace its roots back to the 1980s and provides market insights into consumer electronics, digital imaging, entertainment media, broadcast, optical manufacturing, storage media, professional IT and education technology.
With more than 70 full-time employees providing in-depth analysis and forecasts across consumer and professional electronics categories, Futuresource is able to advise on market, competitive and technological developments, providing clients with access to the information that helps produce the best possible results.


3 December 2014
Record Quarter for Chromebooks in US K-12 Education Market:
More Than One Million Units Shipped

Google's Chromebook platform is the best-selling device in US K-12 education for the second quarter in a row, according to the latest report from Futuresource Consulting on the global uptake of personal computers in K-12 education. Shipments of Chromebook PCs reached more than one million units in the third quarter of the year, accounting for more than 35% of all personal computing devices. Chromebooks continue to outpace the sales of competing platforms such as Apple's iPad and other notebooks within the US market, with more than two million shipped between January and September 2014.

"The Chromebook commotion in US K-12 education goes beyond the question of lower cost," says Phil Maddocks, Market Analyst, Futuresource Consulting. "Manageability is a key consideration for school districts in the US, and as the number of devices deployed in schools continues to increase, the ability to easily manage a large number of devices comes to the fore. Google provides a simple cloud management solution to manage a large number of Chromebooks. In order to manage a large number of competing devices, schools - in some instances - will need to look towards an enterprise level device management solution, with an uptick in costs and complexity."

Apple Brand Maintains The Lead

Despite the rapid uptake of Chromebooks, Apple continues to be the brand leader in the US K-12 education market with its MacBook and iPad solutions. Leading Chromebook providers Acer (#1 chromebook provider) and Dell (#2 in chromebooks) have gained overall market share to reach the #3 (Acer) and #2 (Dell) spots respectively. Samsung has also recently announced an Intel-powered Chromebook specifically for the education market to replace its aging Series 3 Chromebook, which to date, has been the company's biggest seller.

Tablets Hit Hard

The tablet form factor has been hit hardest by this Chromebook surge, again losing traction in Q3 and representing 33% of total market sales, down ten percentage points year on year. However, Amplify restarted the deployment of its Intel-based tablet solution to Guildford School District after problems during the first wave of deployment. Amplify launched a new Intel based Android tablet earlier in 2014 which has been used for this deployment, and has provided this along with its digital content and assessment solutions.

"Growth in 2014 has been driven by the move towards common core and SBAC/PARCC assessment, and this is expected to continue in 2015," says Maddocks. "Many school boards are not yet fully equipped for common core assessment and it is expected that they will continue to invest in 2015, and we predict market volumes will increase by 10% in 2015. Competition in the US will continue to increase as new form factors such as convertible notebooks and detachable tablets gain traction. We've already seen school districts such as Baltimore School District embracing these form factors -purchasing 150,000 HP Resolve 810. Competition from Chromebooks and Windows notebooks is also expected to increase - we will see sub $200 Chromebooks enter the market in 2015 from a number of vendors, as well as cheaper Windows-based notebooks utilizing Microsoft's Shape the Future program which will be competing in the same price range."

The Global Outlook

Globally, the uptake of mobile devices in K-12 education is developing very differently. Chromebooks have yet to see the levels of uptake they have in the US in other countries (the US accounts for over 85% of Chromebook global sales YTD). Meanwhile, Android tablets - which have not seen substantial uptake in the US - continue to be deployed as part of national education projects in several emerging countries.

Some of the most significant education projects globally in 2014 include FATIH in Turkey (where more than 700,000 tablets have been deployed to students), Computers for Schools and the national 4G auction in Colombia (more than 350,000 tablets to students to-date), and a national project in Mexico where more than 600,000 tablets have been shipped. Tablets still remain the device of choice, particularly in emerging countries and within the Asia-Pacific region where price point is a key consideration for larger scale projects. Notebooks have also seen uptake as part of several national scale projects such as Elcot Phase Three in India, Turkmenistan's annual education project, and a recently-announced notebook project in Georgia that was won by Acer.