Education Market to Remain Solid

Businesses may be cutting back on investment in new audio visual equipment but schools and universities look likely to forge ahead.

Technologies targeting education may offer a solid opportunity for audio visual (AV) resellers seeking new deals as corporations batten down the hatches against an economic storm.

An expert on educational equipment in the UK said that, “plenty of secondary classrooms are still yet to install interactive whiteboards (IWBs) and that thousands more will need kitting out as part of government programs.”

They also stated that, “Some schools are starting to need replacement boards now – even before we even get into the major replacement phase,” before adding, “resellers can go back to existing customers to enhance a previous board sale, or use the Learner Response Systems (LRS) to open doors at schools lacking in budget or wanting to hold off introducing IWBs.”

Support network

LRSs, like other peripherals, can be sold as part of an IWB bundle or as a standalone sale. Increasingly affordable, fully integrated systems are the preferred solution due to the speed of implementation and reduced on-screen shadowing.

Resellers, however, need to fully understand the benefits of using LRS in a classroom environment, and importantly, what is in it for the teacher.

Channel support should include training and a flexible leasing scheme with an option to factor in future upgrades. Channel partners should also be alerted when a customer qualifies for an upgrade.

Competition in the education market is widely regarded as fierce, however, recent Futuresource Consulting figures show LRS sales exceeding UK targets by 10 per cent and analysts agree that opportunities are excellent and will continue.

Ask the audience

Voting systems are also up-and-coming technologies that benefit both teachers and pupils. Similar to TV’s ‘Who Wants to be a Millionaire?’, the teacher throws out a question, the pupils answer using handsets and the teacher can work out that 80 per cent of the pupils do not know what he is talking about.

Visualisers, which enable teachers to show a class of 25 or so pupils a magnified image of a small item that previously would have to have been passed around, are also an excellent opportunity for resellers.

School budgets are set in advance and less likely to be cut back as a result of the economic downturn. Smart Technologies’ IWB and interactive podia are currently selling very well and their product range targeting education is expanding.

Visualisers are becoming as essential as IWBs in schools with up-selling opportunities including products such as networkable cameras, mice, wireless slates, audio devices, styli and educational software and is proving increasingly popular, especially if it all works with what the school already has.

Advanced Inc. are experts in creating extraordinary presentation environments through a comprehensive range of audio visual products for boardrooms, conference rooms, classrooms and training facilities.

Contact us today or call us toll free on (800) 436-6239.

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