Why I wish the iPad beat the Chromebook in the Classroom

We live in a world where the lowest bidder ultimately wins. Unfortunately the lowest bidder has won over education, our students, and our future contributors to society.

The Chromebook has bested the iPad in the classroom.

Don’t get me wrong, I think Chromebooks are great. Comparing them to iPads is a lot like comparing oranges to apples. However, the comparison is fair when referencing the classroom, where in the early days of integrating technology into it the iPad got the head start.

Now the Chromebook reigns supreme. This is largely due to the pricepoint, and the fact that the Chromebook lends itself to a more traditional method of teaching. Teachers generally feel more comfortable with a Chromebook and pressure their administrators to purchase the more “usable” device. Simply put, the Chromebook is an extremely effective office machine. But the Chromebook lacks in areas of video production and photography, or providing a user friendly environment to import, edit, and quickly output a project that contains these items.

Consequently education, or better put students, have missed out on an opportunity to gain exposure to a host of media production tools that they’ll likely have to use in real life situations as a result.

by Igor Starkov on Unsplash

Media production should not be overlooked as a tool students (and future employees) should be competent with.

The workplace and postsecondary institutes are already trending towards integrating these production tools into their respective places.

For example, my wife is a nurse. When she received training for a new job she watched videos produced using an iPhone by nurses who previously took the same training session and were tasked to make a video to represent what they learned. My wife showed me the video. Not only was it funny and informative, the nature of the video undoubtedly was something the staff could talk about — something that would help build a positive culture in the workplace.

Being someone who formerly paid the bills through film production I understand what is required to produce even the most rudimentary video. In order for a production on a topic to be successful you have to dive into it. Making a video alone is a great learning tool for the producer.

Coincidentally, around the same time my wife showed me the video, I began to become aware that postsecondary and graduate students (mainly in the humanities) were producing videos for Master’s theses. The type of communication is slowly becoming an acceptable and welcome form of communicating ideas.

What’s also frustrating is that the iPad has come along as a decent office device, especially the iPad Pro when you connect a keyboard and the pencil to the device, putting it on par with the Chromebook. However, we live in a world where the lowest bidder ultimately wins. Unfortunately the lowest bidder has won over education, our students, and our future contributors to society.