Mobile Apps Get Heavy Use During Back-to-School Season
PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Mobile apps deployed by Blackboard Inc. have reached nearly 3 million downloads, the company announced today, after seeing a surge in usage during the back-to-school season. Currently, more than 1,100 higher education institutions and school districts worldwide use Blackboard Mobile™ native applications for courses and for student life and services. So far, the apps have been accessed by students, faculty, staff, alumni and others in 127 countries.
In the first three weeks of the fall 2011 semester alone, Blackboard Mobile™ Learn has been accessed more than 3 million times. This summer, more than 20 institutions and districts – including Towson University and Cuyahoga Community CollegeDistrict – launched Blackboard Mobile™ Central applications for their communities to support the back-to-school season.
"We built our app, Tri-C Mobile, for the start of the fall 2011 semester and it has already begun to reinvent the way our campus community engages with the college," said Christina Royal, associate vice president for eLearning and innovation at Cuyahoga Community College. "We wanted to offer the best in technology and access, and that meant making our services and information available on a wide range of mobile devices and platforms. Not only does our app include 12 student life-related modules, it also includes Blackboard Mobile Learn so everything our students need to be successful can be found in one, easy to access place. We are hopeful an increase in student interaction and engagement will lead to a growth in student achievement."
Blackboard is the current leader in campus life apps in the Apple® App Store, with over 80 apps available for download and more five-star app ratings than any other developer. Branded for each institution, Blackboard Mobile Central is a suite of applications within a single mobile app that includes course catalogs, event calendars, university news, sports schedules, directories, interactive maps and even a custom campus tours feature that allows users to take a tour – in person or virtually – guided entirely from the mobile app. To date, Blackboard Mobile Central apps have been used to read more than 5 million university-related news articles, find 1.2 million people in campus directories and locate 1.1 million buildings on campus maps.
Blackboard Mobile Learn allows students to access documents in multiple formats, post announcements, create threaded discussion posts, upload and create content and much more. To date, there are nearly 1 million app users worldwide and more than 15.5 million courses have been viewed. Many schools are also seeing as many as 50 percent of their student body logging into their courses through Blackboard Mobile Learn.
"Mobile is a critical aspect of campus life at Texas A&M as we recognize the need to provide immediate access to popular campus services," said Diane C. McDonald, director of social media and marketing programs for Texas A&M University. "The TAMUmobile iPhone app has been downloaded nearly 100,000 times. With almost 50,000 students on campus, it is clear that the app is extending our reach in ways we could not have imagined. We are excited to have a partner like Blackboard that has deeply invested in the future of mobile education."
"The ability for an institution to immediately reach its community and provide direct access to course content and campus life services through mobile devices is critical to improving the overall campus experience," said Kayvon Beykpour, vice president and general manager of Blackboard Mobile. "We look forward to seeing continued momentum as colleges and universities pursue mobile initiatives and discover ways we can help empower their communities through our product offerings."
The announcement was made at EDUCAUSE 2011, the higher education community's premier information technology event. Blackboard Mobile Learn is available as a native application for Android™; BlackBerry®; iOS for the iPhone®, iPod touch® and iPad®; and Palm® webOS™. Blackboard Mobile Central is available as a native application for Android™; BlackBerry®; iOS for the iPhone® and iPod touch®; and Palm® webOS™, as well as the mobile web for all other web-enabled devices. When enabled by their institution, users can download both mobile apps, at no cost, directly to their device from their respective app stores.
For more information about Blackboard Mobile, please visit www.blackboard.com/mobile or follow @Bb_Mobile on Twitter.