Visiting Bett 2023: Recap
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Mark Hodges, Education Sector Lead at Cantium Business Solutions gives us a run-down of his visit to the 2023 Bett Show that took place 29-31 March 2023 at the ExCeL London.

How time flies! Bett has come around once more, and I was really pleased to be able to attend again this year. Taking a colleague from our technical team – it was great to show him all the fantastic partners, products and people that come along to the show every year.

First stop for the day were our MIS partners. We are really proud to be accredited support partners for both Bromcom and Arbor (as well as SIMS for the last 20 years or so) and feel that they are the best on the market. This has been backed up by all the market data that has come out over the last 18 months or so, with Bromcom and Arbor continuing to expand the number of schools that are using their products. Having discussions with these partners, it was clear to see that they are fully committed to developing their products and are integrating items such as AI, which adds functionality and saves time for school staff. I think that this year will see a continuation of the move to fully cloud-based MIS providers, and I’m sure that they will be releasing more helpful functionality along the way.

Another partner that was at Bett was SecureSchools (a cyber security company that offers independent cyber security audits). They were able to show me their new security platform which builds on their initial audit. The platform allows schools to personalise cyber security policy documents and run email phishing simulations to see how well staff respond to suspicious items and if they follow the policies. It looks like a great platform and I’m excited about the partnership we are developing to support cyber security in schools.

There were plenty of other vendors and products to explore. The ‘big players’ such as Microsoft and Google were there and were demoing their new functionality in tools such as Teams and Google Classroom. As an educator, I really like seeing these products develop and the fact that they are leaning towards wellbeing and using elements such as ‘Reflect’ is a good move in my opinion. Hardware is always prominent at Bett and this year was no different. Microsoft Surface devices look really useful for education and other vendors like Lenovo and Dell had some great devices to use in the classroom.

The level of creativity for the design of the stands always impresses me. BenQ even had a bus on the stand! But for me the real nuggets come from the smaller exhibitors. Lots of focus this year seemed to be on VR and how this can be used in the classroom. Now don’t get me wrong, I really like VR, but is the price point at a level where this can be more than a gimmick? There were also robots, esports and a host of interactive screens.

Overall, I think Bett 2023 was a great show where as always, you get the the opportunity to see the latest in the EdTech world and meet some great people – certainly worth the visit.

For more information on how Cantium could help your school create or drive your technology strategy, contact a member of our team today.