mlearn project

Charles Sturt University's Mobile Learning Project

The iPads

This section will detail the Project experience with the iPads over the last year. The Project has taken a ‘best of breed’ approach for the devices being trialled, and at the end of 2011 iPads were chosen. Despite the number of recent developments in operating systems and additional hardware manufacturers entering the tablet space, it is still felt that the iPad is the best tablet solution on the market. Some of the reasons for this include:

  • both WiFi and 3G connectivity options provide access on and off campus. 3G is particularly suited for off campus usage particularly for workplace learning and remote locations
  • abundant app store and development ecosystem
  • largest market share and units sold worldwide
  • infancy and unavailability of other operating systems (Android, Windows) for tablets
  • lack of thriving app development for tablet devices for other platforms
  • consistency of user experience across devices provides a simpler system to manage
  • suitability for use across the course profile
  • enterprise management options are available, Mobile Device Management integration, and of potentially more significance, the Volume Purchasing Program for apps
  • iPad is the most widely adopted tablet computer and has dominant market share hence:
    • the app ecosystem is thriving and 83% of developers have iOS listed as the platform of choice
    • the peripheral market is thriving and can augment the device and increase its applications in real life contexts
    • publishers have adopted the platform for making textbooks, enhanced texts and apps available to replace and supplement print texts
    • iOS is the most maintained operating system with adoption rates of new versions significantly higher and well managed than competing platforms

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