..but other countries catching up due to the efforts of many European governments
The UK has one of the most advanced education technology markets in Europe, with nearly all schools already having an interactive whiteboard. This represented around 55,000 boards in 2009, according to research from Panasonic. In many other countries such as France, where only 20 per cent of schools are equipped with an interactive whiteboard, the education technology market is still in its infancy.
“The UK is currently leading the way in education technology in Europe but, due to government efforts across the continent, it won’t be long until other countries have caught up. The current trends in this sector, including an increase in new display and interface technologies, are bringing some exciting new approaches to the delivery of IT and the interactive whiteboard is at the heart of these trends,” said Karine Picque, European Imaging Product and Marketing Manager at Panasonic.
In schemes throughout Europe, governments are putting technology at the centre of many large-scale educational initiatives. Government spending for education and science in Germany totalled 10 billion euros in 2009 and this is set to double to about 24 billion euros by the year 2015. In Spain, 200 million euros have been set aside to digitalise all Spanish classes by 2012, and in France the government has pledged 67 million euros to provide 6700 rural schools with laptops.
In the UK, post General Election, it is uncertain which schemes introduced by the previous government will be carried forward. The Building Schools for the Future (BSF) scheme was launched by the Department for Education & Skills in February 2004 and is the largest and most ambitious scheme of its kind anywhere in the world. BSF aims to rebuild or renew nearly every secondary school in England over a 15-year period, bringing together major investment in buildings and technology.
“In three years Panasonic aims to become one of the most important players in the education market and in order to achieve this we propose a different approach to the market. Our partnerships with a number of education technology specialists such as easiteach, is a crucial component in helping us to achieve this aim, as we will not only be providing interactive whiteboards but a complete classroom ICT package. Our technology will help teachers to deliver more dynamic and visual lessons, which in turn will help to improve pupils attention and results,” concluded Picque.
 Futuresource Consulting 2008 - IWB - WW Forecasting by Country