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IDGVI News: Portfolio News 2011

Personalised tablets to the aid of IIT and IIM students

Yahoo News | 19.05.2011

New Delhi: While modern gadgets and newer tech are constantly being introduced into present day classrooms to make learning fun, for Gen Y, tablets are the new "in" thing.

Personalized tablets are now being used by students not merely for social networking but also to gain entry into the IITs, IIMs and other business schools both inside the country and overseas.

Taking a cue from tech-savvy youth, various companies in the education sector are also now coming up with innovative technology-based products to aid students preparing for various competitive exams.

According to market estimates the test preparatory market in India is expected to reach USD 3 billion mark by 2013. The latest to enter the fray is iProf whose tablet priced at Rs 8,000 and equipped with audio-visual content, aims at aiding students unable to attend classroom course to prepare for high-stake admissions exams such as CAT, GMAT and IIT/JEE.

The one-year old firm has recently secured investments worth Rs. 22 crores from private equity firms like Norwest Venture Partners and IDG Ventures India.

"It gives me immense pleasure to associate with Kaplan, the world leader in test preparation.

From now on a student living in Patiala or Patna will have equal opportunity to prepare for admissions into Harvard or Stanford as one living in Mumbai or Manhattan", said company founder and CEO Sanjay Purohit.

The company’s model has generated interest from the world leader in test preparatory market Kaplan.

Kaplan, which generates USD 2 billion as revenue annually, has joined hands with iProf to provide content for the students aspiring to crack GMAT, which is mandatory to secure admission in MBA courses abroad, especially in the US.

Around 25 million students appear for various admission tests annually in the country but the higher education is often effected by lack of strong teachers, limited classroom programs in tier two and tier three cities and the high price of classroom coaching for professional engineering or management courses, say industry experts.

Speaking about the viability of the e-learning solutions Norwest Venture Partners India''s Executive Director Mohan Kumar says, "The present generation is very tech-savvy unlike the previous generations. According to our estimates while 80 per cent of students study from books, five years hence 80 per cent will take to e-learning."

The world''s largest Open University with an enrollment of more than 3.2 million students, IGNOU has also shown interest in the technology driven application as they have partnered with iProf to conduct diploma programmes for 75 of its courses on the personalized education tablet.