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While schools and universities worldwide are striving to digitize education, smartphones are emerging as the preferred technological tool of choice. A study published in The Journal, an education technology news magazine, reveals that around 49 percent of teachers use school-issued mobile devices in the classroom to augment the learning experience. The rapid adoption of tablets and smartphones is becoming commonplace at all levels of an educational institution. In addition, the desire to create a more dynamic learning environment is driving educational institutions to implement policies like Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). Students can use their mobile devices in the classroom to browse the web for additional information, perform research, and collect materials and prepare for their lessons—all on the move. Rather than confining education to the classroom, schools are now developing student resources that are optimized for mobile devices in the form of applications. For example, now an app can provide in‐depth information on chemical compositional structures, 3D graphics, and teach a student complex topics with ease.
According to a recent report by Futuresource Consulting, a specialist research and knowledge-based consulting company, the sale of mobile phones for the education market has surged by four percent. And, most of that growth is seen in the European and Asian Pacific regions. Similarly, the U.S. market is also experiencing a 10 percent increase in the sale of mobile phones and tablets. While windows devices witnesses a 44 percent lead, Apple too experienced a good started to the year. This increase in sales between Microsoft and Apple led both the companies to focus more on developing lower-cost devices.
Mobile technologies have also attracted the attention of high profile educational publishers such as Pearson and McGraw-Hill. E‐books, e‐magazines, audio and video summaries and interactive textbooks are being optimized for mobile platforms and devices. Digital literacy is a critical aspect of schooling and research shows mobile phones play a role in empowering such learning.