Apple has acquired a startup LearnSprout.com for an undisclosed sum. Learn Spout allows educators to gain insight into student outcomes through their API which pulls real-time data out of student information systems. Having real-time information on a student’s potential outcome is very valuable to educational institutions of all sizes. Learn Sprout has made quite a few investments in its analytics platform and quite a few schools and districts have taken advantage of their advanced reports to improve student outcomes.
It is not clear exactly what Apple plans to do with this acquisition, but it’s very likely they are planning on making a play towards the educational market such as what Google has done with Google Apps for Education and what Microsoft is doing with Office 365.
Apple has not given any specifics to what their plans may be, but several think its going to become part of the iPad IOS and allow better support into how students use iPads in education. Apple has been working some Educational tools for the iPad that is designed to complete with Google Chrome and other software as a service platforms. We will just have to wait and see, but it’s clear from this acquisition and the way other leading SIS companies are positioning themselves in the mobile arena, that we can expect more educational technology which takes advantage of the advances in mobile. Mobile is one of the fastest growing segments in education as more and more students use their mobile devices more than full desktop applications. This will definitely be an acquisition to watch and look at what other educational startups are ripe for acquisition.