Apple Event Predictions 3/27/17

Apple is hosting an education focused event on March 27th in Chicago. Many have made predictions about what Apple may, or may not announce and what they feel Apple needs to do to stay relevant in the education market. Some of my favorite wish lists so far:

I imagine that Apple will also use this event to show off some of its iOS education features, including Apple Classroom and the new ClassKit framework that lets app developers build some education-related features (such as locking an iPad into a single app during a test) directly into their apps. ClassKit appeared in a recent beta version of iOS 11.3, so it’s probably the perfect time to roll it out.

-https://www.macworld.com/article/3263716/tech-events/what-will-apple-announce-at-its-chicago-education-event.html

 

Here is my Apple Education Wishlist, 2018 Edition.

  1. Increased iCloud Storage. I’d like to see increased storage space for managed AppleIDs. Currently they’re stuck at 5Gb, and there is no way to get more – no matter how much money you want to pay. More space = a legitimate competitior to Google Drive File Stream.
  2. Increased collaboration features in iCloud. In addition to more space, the ability to share folders, a la Dropbox or Google Drive would be killer. Additionally, support for an LDAP type account lookup in the share sheet would increase the ease at which students and staff can collaborate.
  3. Bring Apple Classroom to the Mac.
  4. Update (or replace) iTunes U to make a real LMS, and bring it to the Mac.
  5. Have an iPad designed for education that includes a keyboard for the same cost (or just a little more) than the current generation iPad.
  6. Update iBooks Author. It’s still rocking the iWork 09 interface. Enough said.
  7. Reasonable Hardware Repair Prices. Some acknowledgment that current hardware is expensive as heck to repair. Did you know that it costs more to repair a liquid spill on a MacBook Air than it does to simply purchase a new device? That you can’t economically replace the laminated screen on an iPad Air/Pro? Please don’t introduce a laminated screen on education focused iPad devices.
  8. Allow In-App purchases to take place with the volume purchase program

So do I expect Apple to do all of this, realistically, no. However any dent in the list will greatly improve how teachers can integrate technology into their classrooms. Several items are low hanging fruit that shouldn’t take too much effort to accomplish. iCloud space for one, is something that should have been done long ago.

Here’s to hoping! We’ll see on the 27th how my wishlist did.

 

Matt Lee