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Apple Teams Up With Ohio State to Offer iPads to Students


Apple Inc. AAPL and Ohio State University recently collaborated to offer 10.5-inch, 256GB iPad Pro with Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard tools to first-year undergraduate students starting next fall.

The university also announced the creation of an iOS design laboratory at the Columbus campus. The design laboratory will be instrumental in developing coding skills of students. The students will also get a chance to learn mobile application building in Swift programming language. Training for Swift coding is expected to begin in the spring semester.

Per an Ohio State spokesman, Chris Davey, given the scale of the partnership, Apple will provide the iPads at a discounted rate to the university. Both sides are close to finalizing the deal. The university will spend more than $10 million funded through its “administrative efficiency program”, adds the report.

Increasing iPad Sales

In the last reported quarter, Apple sold 11.4 million iPads up 15% year over year. Revenues of $5 billion were up 2% from the prior-year quarter. The results were mainly driven by a 32% year-over-year sales increase in the U.S. education market. Apart from the U.S., Japan, China, Germany and France also showed double-digit growth.

Notably, shares of Apple have gained 34.2% year to date, slightly outperforming the industry’s 33.4% rally.

The company believes that the new iPad Pro launched in June with its ProMotion technology is the most effective tool for teaching purposes. Moreover, the company’s app development training initiative in Swift programming language will enable students to enhance their coding skills and place them better in a highly competitive job market.

The company reported in the last quarter that iPad and Swift Playgrounds have been adopted by more than 1.2 million students across all age groups.

Per market research company NPD, in June, Apple registered a 55% share of the U.S. table market, up from 46% in the year-ago period. Moreover, tablets that priced over $200 captured a whopping 89% share of the market. Customer satisfaction rate is also extremely high for all iPad models.

iPad is also gaining traction among schools driven by the wide range of multimedia features of the education specific iOS applications. Reportedly, the One to One program was renewed by Minnesota’s St. Paul Public School District and Kansas’s Shawnee Mission School District, having purchased 40,000 and 19,000 iPads, respectively.

Further, in the last conference call, management noted that the company’s Everyone Can Code initiative is likely to be adopted by over 1,000 K-12 schools across the country this fall.

Zacks Rank and Stocks to Consider

Currently, Apple carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Better-ranked stocks in the broader technology sector include Applied Materials AMAT, Micron Technology MU and ON Semiconductor ON, all sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Long-term earnings growth rate for Applied Materials, Micron Technology and ON Semiconductor is currently projected to be 17.1%, 10% and 18.1%, respectively.

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