We know Apple has had a lot of success pushing iPads in education, and during Apple’s Q3 conference call, CEO Tim Cook said the company would continue to be “very aggressive”. Apple’s iPad 2 sales in the K-12 market doubled y-o-y in Q3 thanks to a price drop to $399. In Q2, Apple said it sold about a million iPad units to the United States education market. With Apple’s upcoming iPad mini announcement possibly bringing an even lower price point for iPads in education, Amazon is announcing its plans today to get Kindle tablets into schools.
Reuters reported today that Amazon is launching a service, called “Whispercast”, aimed at allowing schools to easily deploy and manage multiple kindle devices:
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Amazon said it has been testing Kindles in recent years with hundreds of kindergarten through 12th grade schools in the United States, selling the devices at bulk discounts and helping them purchase and distribute e-books to students.
Administrators and teachers can set up user accounts for each student and arrange them into one or more groups, such as a specific class or grade level. They can also set limits on what students can do with the devices, such as blocking Facebook and web browsing and disabling purchasing, Amazon said.
Amazon’s education push is part of a broader effort by the world’s largest Internet retailer to get Kindles into as many hands as possible.
Earlier this week, we told you Apple plans to sell 10 packs of iPad minis to education for a discount. It will be interesting to see how much of a focus education is at Apple’s media event on Oct. 23. Amazon is hoping Whispercast will make things easier for business customers too—another tablet market Apple has a firm grasp on. It will also have to compete with the more than 20,000 education and learning iPad apps on the App Store as of January.