Microsoft gains low-end education share in US, but losing ground against Chromebooks globally

In the education market, Microsoft is fighting a battle against the encroachment of Chromebooks, and that battle is increasingly becoming global.

Education analyst company FutureSource reports that Windows held 43.5% K12 education market share in 2017, slightly down year on year. Chromebooks, on the other hand, held 31.3% share,  with increasing adoption in Canada, Northern Europe and Australasia.

The vast majority of Chromebooks still went to USA however, with only 13% being deployed to the rest of the world. In USA Chromebooks held the largest market share in 2017, at 58.3%.

Microsoft’s Education PC initiative has been winning back some market share in USA however, with Windows share growing by 6.5% for devices under $300 – reaching its highest share in four years in this category, with iPads seemingly the biggest loser.

“Despite the slowdown, both Google and Windows devices saw unit growth during the fourth quarter, while Apple’s iPad volumes declined year-on-year after shipments reached a quarterly high of over 1 million units during Q2 2017,” commented Ben Davis, Senior Market Analyst at Futuresource Consulting. “The sub $300 price category saw the largest rise in share, growing 6% year-on-year, in part thanks to Microsoft and its OEM partners launching a raft of lower cost education focused Windows devices in recent past.”

Microsoft is not just competing against Chromebooks and iPads, with schools increasingly opting for Android tablets in the Asia Pacific Region. Microsoft has responded by offering integrated solutions like Office 365 for Education, Microsoft Teams for Education and Microsoft Learning Tools. Microsoft has also announced a range of content for its mixed reality platforms in partnership with leading educational publisher Pearson.

Overall the global sales of Mobile PCs into the K-12 market increased in 2017, with annual shipments growing 11% year-on-year, reaching 29.2 million units, up from 26.3 million in 2016.

Read more detail at FutureSource here.

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