ViewBoard® FAQs

Why should we consider adding interactive technology to our classrooms?

Front-of-room interactive displays like ViewSonic ViewBoards support the latest research on what works to improve student success. Collaborative learning has been demonstrated by research to improve student engagement, retention, and scores, and to help students develop the skills to succeed in the 21st century. Also, the traditional education model, where teachers lecture and students listen, is being replaced by an evidence-based approach where instructors facilitate the development of knowledge among students working together collaboratively.


What is some specific research supporting classroom collaboration?

A landmark study of classroom IWBs (the first widely-used interactive technology) showed that the use of interactive whiteboards was associated with a 16% gain in student achievement. The study further revealed that combining the interactive display board with the careful use of graphics/visuals, information reinforcers, and an audience response mechanism, the gain was 31 percentile points.1


Is there information on what teachers say about interactive technology?

Teachers report that increased student attentiveness and engagement are the top benefits of teaching with an interactive display,2 and a majority of educators – around 77% in one survey – believe that an interactive display in the classroom is very important or an absolute must.3


How do ViewSonic ViewBoards support the new collaborative education model?

ViewSonic ViewBoards enable 10 touch points of interactivity at a time, which lets groups of students interact and collaborate in virtually unlimited ways. Because they’re an all-in-one solution equipped with an embedded processor and web browser, ViewBoards let students and instructors seamlessly integrate materials like video, computer applications, and web-based content, then write directly on content and save for future reference or to share with absent group members. They’re also device agnostic and can be easily combined with school-issued or student BYOD devices and content sharing apps like Solstice software.


How do I know which interactive technology is best for my school?

Traditional interactive whiteboards (IWBs), interactive projectors, and ViewBoard displays each have distinct features. Although the up-front cost for ViewBoards is higher than the other technologies, the advantages of a ViewBoard often outweigh the other technologies. A careful assessment of your budget, space constraints and content considerations will help determine your best fit. The advantages of ViewBoards over IWBs and IPJs are discussed below.


1 Marzano, Robert J., The Art and Science of Teaching / Teaching with Interactive Whiteboards, November 2009 , Volume 67, Number 3 , Multiple Measures Pages 80-82, Retrieved 2.25.14 from http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/nov09/vol67/num03/Teaching-with-Interactive-Whiteboards. aspx


2 PMA Research Report. Survey of U.S. K-12 Educators Shows Strong Interest in Interactive Functionality for Classroom Projectors, Accessed 3.4.14 at http://www.pmaresearch.com/press-releases/survey-of-u-s-k-12-educators-shows-strong-interest-in-interactivefunctionality-for-classroom-projectors/


3 Interactive Whiteboards Enhance Classroom Instruction and Learning, Accessed 4.14.14 at: http://www.neamb.com/professional-resources/ benefits-of-interactive-whiteboards.htm

My customers use Google Classroom. Are ViewBoards compatible?

ViewSonic ViewBoard Interactive Flat Panels and ViewBoard for Education software are 100% compatible with Google Classroom and all related apps. In fact, they are explicitly designed to deliver a seamless interface in Google-based Classrooms.

Built on a Google Android platform, ViewSonic ViewBoards let users begin inking, right out of the box. They’re also the first interactive solutions to include several Google Classroom-specific features – including a one-touch save to Google Drive feature – enabling instructors and students to easily create, interact with, save and share content using their familiar Google Classroom suite of applications.

To get started, simply activate the floating tool bar with ViewSonic’s proprietary two-finger touch to select from 3 pen colors, then write or draw directly on top of any application, content, or web browser. Displayed content is immediately interactive and collaborative.

To save content to your Google Drive, just tap the cloud icon, name your file, click OK, and your on-screen content is saved directly to your class’s Google Drive. Sharing is just as simple: Click your Google Drive, find the file, long press, then choose whether to share to student Drives or email a link. You can also choose to let students edit, comment on, or simply keep the file. Easily set up defaults for your most-used configurations.

Resource development is easy with quick access to any Google Classroom app via the ViewBoard Windows tool, or use the integrated templates and customizable backgrounds to create your own content. Import virtually any type of document or media file and use integrated tools like Screen Recorder, Mind Map, Countdown Timer and more to help organize presentations and create timed quizzes, games and other compelling materials.


Will it be difficult to get teachers to use ViewBoards?

Both teachers and students tend to perceive ViewSonic ViewBoards as giant iPads and get pretty excited about using them – and operating a ViewBoard is really a lot like using a tablet. The ViewBoard annotation software is designed specifically for use in classrooms; it’s very intuitive and interfaces easily with Google Classroom. Advice from education technology professionals on helping teachers use technology includes incorporating training and professional development (PD) to help instructors move from learning to use a technology, to accepting it, integrating it into their daily curriculum, and learning to use it well. Good PD also focuses attention on how the tool will bring value to teachers and their students, not just on how to use the technology.4


What are some of the most common ways ViewBoards are used in a classroom?

ViewBoards bring engagement, interaction and collaboration to any type of classroom and the possible uses are virtually endless. Among them are:

  • Teacher-directed viewing and navigation of any website, app, video, or document to support learning objectives
  • Dramatic emphasis of key learning points with onscreen highlighting and annotation
  • Save and print capability, for instant handouts, supplementary notes, and absent students
  • Facilitation of group projects and individual presentations
  • A collaborative work environment for text documents, spreadsheets, design projects, etc. Video conferencing connectivity
  • Text/data entry via floating onscreen keyboard
  • Onscreen editing and recording of changes or additions
  • Support for effective special needs education and classroom differentiation
  • Student feedback and assessment with optional audience response accessories

How do ViewBoards make classroom collaboration easier?

Students tend to perceive ViewBoards as a giant iPad, which provides an immediate level of comfort – along with the draw of the “coolness” factor. In fact, the ways in which they can interact with the ViewBoard are pretty much just like what they’re familiar with on a tablet – taps, pinches, and the like. Plus, with ViewBoards, more students can participate at any one time – with up to 10 students simultaneously interacting with course content, using just their fingers (or a stylus if they prefer). Very few projectors or projector-based IWBs can come close to offering this level of intuitive group collaboration, with many only offering interactivity with special pens and many only allowing one or two students at a time to use the display.


4Work, Josh, 5 Tips to Help Teachers Who Struggle with Technology, Technology Integration bog, Edutopia.org, Retrieved February 3, 2014, from: http://www.edutopia.org/blog/help-teachers-struggling-with-technology-josh-work

How are ViewBoards different from IWBs?

ViewSonic ViewBoards are an all-in-one interactive classroom solution. ViewBoards deliver interactivity using a single component – the display itself. Interactive whiteboards are projector-based systems that use a large display board connected to a computer and projector. The computer’s desktop is transmitted via the projector onto the board’s surface. In this system, the interactive capabilities are embedded in the display board itself but the content must be transmitted to the board via the projector.


What benefits do ViewBoards offer over IWBs and IPJs?

Because they last longer and eliminate the costs and maintenance of projectors, ViewBoards deliver a better TCO over time than IPJs and IWBs. They are also easier to install and when wall-mounted eliminate the messiness of exposed cords. ViewBoards are likewise easier and less costly to maintain. Set up and management are also simpler. Brightness, visibility and image quality are improved, letting teachers keep the lights on for greater interaction and better classroom management. ViewBoards also offer greater flexibility than interactive projectors and are quieter to operate.


Are there other benefits of ViewSonic ViewBoards I should know about?

Yes! They’re incredibly durable. ViewBoards are made with a highly durable tempered glass overlay with an antiglare coating for great visibility and strength. Basically, the kids can’t break them, which has happened with Promethean boards. The corners are also rounded for added protection against bumps, bruises and snagged clothes. Another important benefit is that there are no licensing fees of any kind. With a one-time purchase schools get an all-in-one interactive solution that includes the media- and browser-ready display and ViewBoard for Education collaborative software.


How do ViewBoards offer greater flexibility?

Versatility is one of the major advantages of ViewBoards. Equipped with an embedded processor and web browser, ViewBoards provide the dual functionality of an interactive surface and a Full HD media player in one easy-to-use device. This enables the seamless use of integrated educational materials, such as video, computer applications, and web-based content. Additional versatility is delivered by the ability to trolley mount for efficient resource sharing, along with the ability for use by up to 10 students at a time with their fingers or styluses. For easy, device-agnostic use, they’re compatible with any laptop, iPad or tablet and content sharing software like Solstice. Finally, ViewBoards can be expanded with an optional ViewSonic slot-in PC powered by an Intel Core i5 processor with Windows 10 OS or an Intel Core i7 processor with FreeDOS OS, for added computing power and even greater touch functionality.


How do ViewBoards deliver better TCO?

Interactive flat panels can be expected to last quite a bit longer than IWBs and interactive projectors and require far less maintenance during their lifespan. Projectors require regular maintenance to clean filters, replace bulbs and recalibrate. In addition, ViewBoards can be easily mounted to a cart to enable cost-effective resource-sharing, unlike ceiling-mounted projectors.


How much longer do ViewBoards last?

The LED backlight in ViewBoards has a lifespan of over 30,000 hours of average classroom use, which is more than a decade of active use. Instructors and education IT administrators typically report beginning to experience problems with projectors around the 3-year mark. Many plan for a 3-5 year useful life. Some report up to 7 or 8 years of useful life from their projectors when they are well maintained (which is often not the case in busy schools). Generally after about 3 years the cost of new bulbs can outweigh the cost of replacing a projector. One important factor in the long life of LED displays is that they have no moving parts. By contrast projectors rely on cooling by fans, which are particularly likely to fail after extended use, and whose lifespan is even shorter in dusty environments such as many classrooms.

The lifespan of an IWB depends on the useful life of its two components – the projector and the board. Here’s how one education IT company’s team of engineers classifies typical IWB useful life at varying ages (along with estimated cumulative replacement requirements at that time): 5

  • 3 years – a high probability of the projector and board still operational to within the user’s requirements. (3x bulbs addl. replacement cost)
  • 4 years – the projector is likely to fail. (3x bulbs in total + new projector replacement costs)
  • 5 years – the IWB grid or motherboard is likely to start degrading requiring frequent re-calibration. (4x bulbs in total + new projector replacement costs)
  • 6 years – the IWB requires daily re-calibration. (5x bulbs in total + new projector replacement costs)
  • 7 years –the IWB motherboard or grid is likely to fail. (6x bulbs + new projector replacement costs)
  • 8 years – the projector fails again as does the IWB motherboard or grid or both. (7x bulbs + 2x new projector + new IWB replacement costs)
  • 9 Years – does not usually occur

How does power consumption compare?

ViewBoards sized 70” and below typically consume about half the wattage of interactive projectors. For example, the ViewSonic® CDE7061T 70’’ Full HD ViewBoard typically consumes 222W and the ViewSonic® CDE5561T 55’’ Full HD ViewBoard typically consumes 162W. Interactive projector power consumption is generally in the range of 300W – 400W. Most SMARTboards and Promethean boards are USB powered and their accompanying projectors tend to consume in the range of 230W - 280W.


How does image quality compare?

Image quality is important for increasing student engagement and ensuring a great view even for those in the back of the room. ViewBoards deliver crisp, clear images with 1080p resolution and 350 nits of brightness. Unlike projector bulbs, which begin to slowly dim almost from the moment they’re first used – requiring a progressively darker room to ensure visibility – ViewBoards deliver consistent brightness for the lifetime of the display. This lets instructors leave the lights on for better eye contact, note taking and collaboration, as well as better classroom management. Using a ViewBoard also eliminates the shadows and glare caused by ceiling-mounted projectors. The outstanding image quality delivered by ViewBoards is further enhanced by the durable tempered glass overlay with antiglare coating.


What about sound quality?

ViewBoards include dual 10W internal speakers that deliver robust classroom-filling sound. While this is comparable to many projectors, ViewBoards have the advantage of virtually silent operation, unlike most projectors, which require a noise-producing fan for cooling.


5 Wilson, Mark, Interactive touch screens vs Interactive white boards School Business Services, ICT Blog, Posted April 14, 2015. Accessed 10.24.16 at: http://www.schoolbusinessservices.co.uk/interactive-touch-screens-vs-interactive-white-boards/

Why is installation and setup easier with ViewBoards?

All users need to do to get started with a ViewBoard is mount it to a wall or trolley cart. After that, using the ViewBoard is plug and play and very intuitive. ViewBoards include extensive connectivity options to make it easy to quickly connect to a PC, laptop or tablet. IWBs require mounting the projector to the ceiling and the attaching the board to the wall. After that IWB systems (and projectors) need to be calibrated for accurate image display. The older the IWB system/projector, the more frequently it needs to be calibrated.


What maintenance do ViewBoards need, compared to other interactive technology?

ViewBoards require virtually no maintenance, ensuring uninterrupted class time. By contrast, projector bulbs have an average lifespan of 2,000 hours and can burn out at any time, interrupting class and requiring a further investment of time and cost to get back up and running – an average of 45 minutes for a technician to replace the bulb, clean the filter and recalibrate the projector. 6 Many projectors also require filter maintenance, and the failure to regularly clean filters decreases the projector’s lifespan.


What are the advantages of the ViewBoard software?

ViewSonic includes the latest version of ViewBoard for Education software with all ViewBoards. Designed specifically to address educator and student needs, ViewBoard for Education software lets users write, highlight, edit and save in real time. On-screen content can be recorded and saved for absent students or later review. ViewBoard software also helps users develop and deliver engaging, collaborative material with features like integrated subject-specific templates and customizable backgrounds; the ability to import nearly any type of document or media file; and the ability to write directly on the integrated web browser. Many other education-focused tools are included, like templates for mind maps, creating quizzes and more. ViewBoard for Education is also the first (and currently only) interactive software with Direct to Google Drive Save.


6Wilson, Mark, Interactive touch screens vs Interactive white boards School Business Services, ICT Blog, Posted April 14, 2015. Accessed 10.24.16 at: http://www.schoolbusinessservices.co.uk/interactive-touch-screens-vs-interactive-white-boards/