The CITE, a blog published by the National Association of College Stores, takes a look at the intersection of education and technology, highlighting issues that range from course materials to learning delivery to the student experience. Comments, discussion, feedback, and ideas are welcome.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Tablets Top Campus Bandwidth Concerns

According to a Marketing Charts study, students now own an average of seven mobile devices and spend 3.6 hours each day on their smartphones. But smartphones are not the biggest concern for campus IT officials, according to the 2013 State of ResNet report.

The report, the second part of a five-year tracking study from the Association of Information Communications Technology Professions in Higher Education (ACUTA) and the National Association of College University Business Officers (NACUBO), found that 84% of the IT officials on more than 250 campuses across the country said tablets are going to consume the most bandwidth. Laptops and desktop computers were next on the consumption list at 75%, followed by Internet-connected Blu-Ray players (64%), smartphones (63%) and video games (61%).

“There is an expectation right now among students of, ‘Any device, any time, as much as we want,’” Joe Harrington, director of network services at Boston College, told eCampus News. “That has [IT officials] back on their heels a little bit, looking for ways to deal with this proactively rather than reactively.”

The report found that most institutions provide network support, with 60% providing at least 40 hours of support to students and 12% offering 24/7 support. In-room network assistance is available to residential students at 89% of the schools and 47% will dispatch a technician upon request.

In addition, the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) found that while educators view technology integration as important, just 36% who responded to the group’s survey said the bandwidth on their campus was ideal.

“The survey indicates that educators in both K-12 and postsecondary have a desire to integrate technology at a much higher level than they currently have, but need support and assistance to make that happen,” the SIIA report said. “As technology evolves and technology solutions expand, there may be new opportunities to reach ideal goals with more cost-effective and less hardware-dependent solutions.”

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