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Interactive Flat Panels Displays: The Next K-12 Replacement Cycle Opportunity

The global interactive whiteboard market has grown at a tremendous pace over the last decade. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the market has demonstrated an impressive resilience, wrapping-up 2020 by exceeding market expectations. The combined total global sales of Interactive Flat Panel Displays (IFPD) and Interactive Whiteboards (IWB) increased by 9% in volume and 14% in value. 

According to Futuresource Consulting, historically, major uptake of interactive flat panel displays and interactive whiteboards in the early days of the mid 2000’s was in the UK, Mexico, the US and China. Now, interactive whiteboards are common globally but almost exclusively in K-12 schools. Technology has evolved over the last few years and now interactive flat panel displays are gaining more traction in the K-12 market, providing improved solutions to the earlier displays and paving the way for a K-12 replacement cycle opportunity.

“IWB (interactive whiteboard) technology is fast becoming a legacy technology in the classroom; there is a huge opportunity to replace devices with the more modern technology of IFPDs (interactive flat panel displays). There are now the same number of IFPDs as IWBs installed globally - 6.5 million of each - which certainly highlights the legacy cycle potential,” commented Colin Messenger, Senior Market Analyst at Futuresource Consulting.

“Furthermore, various government education initiatives have allocated funding for education; this includes the USA Cares Act, where the new Biden Administration has ear marked $170 billion for EdTech funding (K12 & HE). Likewise, Germany has allocated €5 billion in its DigitalPakt for Education initiative. These will help to drive IFPD and maybe some IWB sales in the education sector,” added Messenger.

The bulk of momentum in 2020 was in the education sector (K12 & HE), which accounted for 79% of interactive flat panel and interactive whiteboard volumes in 2020. However, the corporate meeting room market is slowly building its pace and beginning to adopt IFPDs, albeit the complexity of the sale is proving to be a high barrier to adoption within the corporate market. Nevertheless, Futuresource expects the global corporate IFPD market to grow 60% year-on-year over 2020 -2025, especially in China which accounted for 43% of all global IFPD sales in 2020.

The newly released Futuresource report, Quarter 4 2020 Worldwide Interactive Displays, is part of Futuresource Consulting’s interactive displays quarterly market track service, based on sales-in data from vendors. The service has been operating for over 20 years and covers both IWB and IFPD in education and the corporate sector. It includes sales data at sell-in level in 67 countries, including five-year sales forecasts by country, application of education / corporate, and technology, as well as a competitive situation review and tender alerts.  For more information about this report please contact

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Colin Messenger

About the author

Colin Messenger

Colin has been with Futuresource Consulting for over 25 years, he has been involved with the Interactive and schools markets on a day-to-day basis for over eighteen years and runs the worldwide interactivity displays research programmes.

Prior to Futuresource he held senior positions at Orange for 10 years, and as General Manager of Euronet Cellular Communications launched the first UK distribution company to offer a consumer mobile phone package to dealers.

He was a member of the UK Government’s DfES, Classroom of the Future Project (Ingenium) and he has been an AV Awards judge over the last 12 years. He is a STEM Ambassador, where he visits schools enthusing on careers in science and technology. He is governor of a London school and acts as a strategic partner for their IT vision plan.

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