Tablets are not accessible to every student because of their high prices. Although tablets provide convenience and new ways of learning through technology, not every child can afford them. Schools that want to use tablets must pay for the devices (hardware) and digital textbooks (software), creating extra costs that are not affordable for every institution. According to leading education management consultant Lee Wilson, the estimated annual cost per student per class with tablets is $71.55, a significant increase in comparison to $14.16, the estimated annual cost per student per class with print textbooks. Schools that seek to provide students with tablets instead of textbooks must pay for extra costs to supplement the devices; Wilson claims that a school would pay 552% more to implement iPad textbooks over print textbooks. If a school cannot provide tablets, its students might look into purchasing them. In addition to the cost of a tablet, however, they must also pay for sufficient internet bandwidth at home and any apps or software needed to complete schoolwork. If the tablet malfunctions, the student will need to pay for repair costs.
High-end tablets can cost thousands of dollars, but tech companies have created more affordable options over the past few years. Now, a student does not need to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars to own a tablet. Schools that want to provide tablets to their students can look into budget-friendly options, and tablets can be shared among students to help reduce costs. Additionally, digital textbooks are cheaper than printed textbooks because of the digital textbooks' lower manufacturing costs, which thereby helps schools save more money in the long run.