If the University of Virginia is any indication, Apple’s fortunes on campuses continued to rise this year. About one in four freshmen at the university owns an Apple computer, up from one in five the previous year, according to a comprehensive inventory of student technology ownership conducted in the fall.
Just five years ago, only 4 percent of UVa’s freshmen said they owned a Mac.
In the early days of personal computers, Apple machines were the most popular brand on campuses, though computer ownership was relatively rare then. (For more on Apple’s ups and downs in higher education, see our past coverage.)
The university has been tracking student technology ownership since 1997, and officials published this academic year’s data this month.
The latest numbers confirm the demise of the desktop on campus, a trend we reported last year. This year, 99 percent of the students reported owning a laptop rather than a desktop. Only four students who answered the survey said they don’t own a computer at all (or 0.1 percent of the respondents).
Just 7 percent of freshmen reported owning a video-game system, suggesting that many students are too busy on Facebook and other software programs to play Wii or other popular amusements.
Does your campus publish computer-ownership figures? If so, share your links in comments. —Jeffrey R. Young