Interactive Whiteboards Becoming Multilingual
The latest trend in the rapidly advancing and fiercely competitive interactive whiteboard market reflects the ever-increasing popularity and global appeal of this technology: support for multiple languages. A variety of manufacturers have recently added or expanded their language resources because of U.S. demand for teaching ELL students, the use of the devices in foreign language classes and strong sales in countries around the world.
Language In Demand
SMART Technologies has sold over 2 million whiteboards worldwide including in Mexico, New Zealand and the Middle East, and its Notebook teaching software supports dozens of languages, from Arabic to Welsh. Mimio plans to offer its software and online user community in 11 languages by the end of February. Global membership in Promethean's online community doubled in the last year, prompting the company to offer free teaching resources in ten languages and enabling teachers to connect and collaborate from some 150 countries. Luidia's user software is now available in 14 languages including Dutch, Portuguese and Russian, due to an increasing number of requests for more diverse language support from its customers. And the new online interactive whiteboard training course from Blossom Learning that debuted last month at FETC will soon be offered in French and Spanish, with the official announcement assuring the public that many additional languages are planned "shortly."