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EdTech and E-Learning Development Trends in 2020

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E-learning development is now a multi-billion industry that empowers education across the globe with EdTech. The variety of tech solutions we use nowadays are way more complex than the once popular Content Management Systems (CMSs). In this article, we analyze the EdTech trends in 2020 that stimulate the popularization of the next-gen Learning Management Systems (LMSs), VR and AR applications, and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC).

Initially, the e-learning industry served a simple function — giving learners access to educational materials. The growing demand for online education has prompted businesses and universities to save time and costs by implementing EdTech solutions.

While some universities purchase a ready-to-use LMS, others delegate e-learning development to offshore software development teams. It’s also a common practice for EdTech startups to hire remote developers for addressing companies that offer custom e-learning software development services.

In 2020, educators are using these new technologies to shift the focus from providing general access to educational content to the needs of each individual learner. That's why we expect to see even more corporations and universities use mobile and microlearning EdTech solutions‎.

According to Statista’s projections, the e-learning industry will surpass $243B by 2022 ignited by the rapid influx of users caused by the coronavirus disease. Some traditionally popular types of software, such as self-paced e-learning products, will be losing users. Statista predicts that the self-paced e-learning product market that earned about $46B in 2016 will get as little as $33B in revenue in 2021.

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98% of US Businesses Plan to Adopt EdTech in 2020

Just as in previous years, the worldwide e-learning market has been showing stable growth this year so far. By the end of 2022, the industry is projected to surpass $243B in revenue. Corporations stand in the front-line of e-learning adoption mainly because the implementation of e-learning solutions directly impacts their revenue.

The American Society for Training and Development survey concludes that companies that have adopted “comprehensive training programs” have a 24% higher profit margin and hit a 218% increase in revenue per employee. Seeing the positive outcomes, about 98% of the US businesses planned to adopt EdTech in 2020.

E-Learning Software Development Revenue Growth

  • 2018 - $190 billion
  • 2022 - $243 billion 
  • 2025 - $325 Billion
  • 2026 - $398 Billion

The EdTech solutions (check e-learning solutions by Agente) are growing in popularity among the representatives of higher education institutions. About 65% of faculty members approve the use of Open Educational Resources (OERs) in their teaching practice and about 63% have expressed their support towards competency-based education systems.

E-Learning Development Industry Structure

E-Learning Development Industry Structure



“Online learning is rapidly becoming one of the most cost-effective ways to educate the world’s rapidly growing workforce”


Jack Messman,
Former CEO at Novell

71% of Millennials Prefer Mobile E-Learning Software

Mobile software development isn’t a new word in the Learning and Development (L&D) practice, but it’s been gaining momentum in recent years. The reason for this is that Baby Boomers and Gen-Xers, accustomed to hard-copy educational materials, are either preparing to or retire, making way for mobile-dependent Millennials and Gen-Zers.

Towards Maturity research shows that nearly 64% of learners think that learning materials should be accessible via their mobile devices. The study also shows a 43% increase in learning productivity among active mobile users compared with non-mobile users. Learners who use mobile devices complete course materials 45% faster compared to those using computers.

Google informs that the number of mobile-only users that comprise 27% of all users has surpassed the number of desktop-only users that now make only 14% of the general internet population.

Worldwide Self-paced e-learning market revenue in 2016 and 2021

Worldwide Self-paced e-learning market revenue in 2016 and 2021 Statista

Corporations Are Implementing More Microlearning Solutions in E-Learning

So what is microlearning? Microlearning is an approach within the e-learning industry according to which learning materials are broken into small digestible parts. All course materials address the practical side of work and are presented as short 3–7 minute tutorials followed by instant application of new skills.

All evidence shows that e-learning has helped businesses cut expenses on learning initiatives by substituting instructors with software. Nonetheless, e-learning solutions age fast and are expensive to build, and pretty often they miss the “application points.”

Creating a microlearning course is less expensive and faster than building a LMS. Speaking in numbers, it’s 50% cheaper and 300% faster. Because microlearning courses focus exclusively on building practical skills by addressing the “application points,” they increase professional performance. This way, e-learning engineers cut to the chase and throw away the irrelevant parts of EdTech software.

Businesses use microlearning to reduce non-productive time of new employees. Thus, customer-facing and seasonal workers get involved in a quick and to-the-point educational process right when they need it.

VR and AR E-Learning Software Is Getting More Accessible

VR and AR-aided learning solutions are gaining more popularity in the e-learning industry. Like in microlearning, VR apps are built to encourage learners to use new knowledge in practice immediately. A good EdTech VR simulation creates an immersive environment that requires total engagement of learners and, consequently, increases the quality of learning results.

The VR/AR-aided EdTech solutions are getting more popular, even though the development remains costly. Famous for its immersive experience, this e-learning technology is widely used for preparing specialists in medicine, airforce, retail, and customer-facing service industries.

The versatility and affordability of VR headsets also contribute to the overall adoption of the technology. VR headsets have dropped in price. The release of the affordable Oculus Go, which can operate on mobile and PC, made VR e-learning easy to adopt in online and offline learning.

Popular practical ways of using VR in e-learning:

  • Online simulation of learning environment
  • Web-based courses with customizable learning paths
  • E-learning assessments aided with visual feedback

E-learning enthusiasts predict that the future of e-learning belongs to AR/VR solutions. In 2020, the e-learning industry sees educational institutions and businesses adopt and develop versatile educational technologies for sharing and storing data, creating flexible educational courses, communicating, and tracking success.

Popular types of EdTech software:

  • Learning Management Systems/Learning Management Applications
  • Digital Publishing Platforms
  • E-Learning Gamification Solutions
  • Online Communication Software
  • Assessment and Evaluation Software
  • Management and Administration Software

New Faces Among Top Education Technology Companies

  • StudyTube
  • Preply
  • Teachable
  • Teachers Pay Teachers
  • Schoology (If you're looking for more EdTech Platforms, you can check out this ultimate guide from Eduard Klein)

An independent EdTech listing by HolonIQ included 11 Ukrainian platforms among the top 100 Eastern European e-learning startups. EnglishDom, Parta, SkillUp, Speechyard, and other online learning platforms have entered the prestigious rating.

The well-known e-learning platforms like Udemy, Skillshare, Coursera, and LinkedIn still hold a strong grip on the EdTech market. However, while offering educational courses on versatile topics, they’re yet unable to address the learning needs of corporations, universities, and schools. This gap is being actively filled by the runners-up in the EdTech field. Top 5 EdTech Startups:


StudyTube is a multi-functional online learning platform that has a rich library of ready-to-use courses and a flexible course builder. The company has a remote team of e-learning software developers in Ukraine that help introduce new functionality to the product. The secret sauce of the LMS is rich analytics on the learning progress that are popular among organizations striving to improve the professional skills of their employees.

Founded: 2010
Funding: $1.6M

An online platform for language learning that helps learners find tutors. This Ukraine-based EdTech company recently closed the A-round of funding and raised $9M. It has earned its good reputation among users thanks to effective tutor and student support. Multiple filters help learners connect with tutors that fit all their requirements — free time slots, price, knowledge, background — and get a personalized educational experience.

Founded: 2012
Funding: $9M

Teachable is an EdTech startup that helps educators organize learning materials into courses and sell them. Educators use the platform with course builder functionality that supports multiple media formats. Students can pick a course by reading course descriptions and watching course previews.

The platform is a great example of a self-paced learning EdTech solution that currently counts about 124K instructors, more than 28M students from all around the world, and not less than 310K active courses available.

Founded: 2014
Funding: $8.5M

Teachers Pay Teachers is the largest online marketplace for educational content in the world. The platform is frequently used for seeking original digital educational resources as well as educational strategies. 

Users can easily search for activities like games or printable worksheets on any topic. Besides hosting learning courses for a wide range of subjects, the platform has a strong and large community of educators offering strategies and advice.

Founded: 2006
Funding: Undisclosed

Schoology is a LMS with 12M active users. K-12 schools and universities prefer this EdTech solution because it enables students and educators to store and manage learning resources in one place.

The platform allows educators to personalize the learning process by individually assigning tasks to each student according to their needs.

Founded: 2009
Funding: $57.1M

Guide to Nearshore Software Development in Eastern Europe

Software development market statistics of the tech countries — Poland, Ukraine, Romania, Czech Republic, Hungary, Bulgaria, Belarus, and Croatia.

Perception of E-Learning by Students and Employers Still Varies

Even though e-learning is growing more popular and gets adopted even by state educational systems, there’s no certainty whether the trend will remain. The core challenges facing the industry, such as computer illiteracy and poor internet connection, do not disappear fast.

Common Concerns in E-Learning

Common Concerns in E-Learning Source

Getting an online degree or graduating an online academy is a great time- and cost-saving strategy people use these days. But before they enroll in another course, about 69% consider whether:

  • They’ll get quality instruction and academic support
  • Employers will consider online courses as credible proof of knowledge
  • They’ll feel as a part of the academic community and will be able to communicate with the staff
  • The EdTech solution will be easy to navigate

And only 31% of new online course enrollers have no concerns regarding the quality of learning materials, community, and support.

E-Learning in 2020: Challenges and Predictions

E-learning was facing a stable increase and adoption even before the worldwide lockdown caused by COVID-19 took place. And unlike the majority of digitized industries, e-learning has felt mild or even no setbacks during the quarantine.

Education institutions of all levels have transferred their learning process to online platforms and conferencing tools. About 1.2B students of school age started the EdTech-aided learning process within just two months. The wave of new users has significantly increased the revenue of e-learning businesses with learning management systems and also generated additional revenue for companies in streaming and conferencing.

EdTech platforms for language learning as well as MOOCs report increased numbers of users. One of the assumptions is that having more free time at their hands, people started using language learning platforms and other educational applications. This has caused an increase in the number of people using EdTech apps for online learning, video tutoring, video conferencing, and e-learning marketplaces.

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If you’re searching for great tech talent for custom e-learning development such as configurable LMS platforms, learning gamification solutions, cross-platform interactive content development, and other EdTech apps, feel free to contact our sales representatives. We will do everything it takes extend your tech team with top-notch EdTech software developers.

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