Projection Trends in the Education Market
Apr 2, 2008 12:00 PM, By Linda Seid Frembes
Projectors are standard equipment in most classrooms these days. For as long as most can remember, there has been some kind of projection device in the classroomalbeit the size and sophistication has vastly improved over the last few decades. According to thehistoryof.net, the first idea of a projector was envisioned in a drawing by Johannes de Fontana in 1420. Thankfully, projection technology has developed beyond Fontana’s sketch of a monk holding a lantern.
Research data published earlier this year by market research firm TFCinfo found that the percentage of projector use in both K-12 and higher education presented quite a range (see Figure 1). In higher education, public institutions averaged 66.5 percent, with a slightly higher average of 70.8 percent in private institutions. For the K-12 sector, public schools in the city had a higher average (40.9 percent) versus public schools in rural areas (31.1 percent). Private K-12 schools in the city had the highest average of 51.2 percent.
“We are seeing broader use of projectors in the education market,” says Bob Guentner, product manager for NEC’s portable projectors division. “Why? Using multimedia in the classroom is and extension of the student’s world where they use computers, play video games, and view satellite and cable programs. Technology is required to keep students interested in coursework. Also, projectors are much more affordable now, prices have dropped and performance has increased. Classroom projectors are typically under $1,000 each, and you can get XGA resolution and more features at an affordable price point now.”
Guentner notes that most schools are using projectors for multimedia presentations and connect with various inputs from video sources and computers. Interactive whiteboards are being used to build presentations and keep students engaged with coursework. “There is also more connectivity to the network. Remote monitoring of the projector is a popular request, regardless of whether it is a new install or a remodel,” he says. “Remote monitoring lets school technicians check the on/off status of projectors and know the number of hours on the lamp or the filter. An email can be sent from the projector to the admin desk if either needs to be changed.”
NEC projectors also offer affordable control options that allow setup of basic networking capabilities and the ability to remotely monitor up to 2,000 projectors at one time. “Independent control options are a cost-savings for schools that do not have a system-wide control system in place, but want the functionality for their projectors,” Guentner says. “Using our software solution, they can send information over the network, and have the capability to turn on every projector and broadcast a school-wide emergency message.”
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