White Boards-History and Innovation
Whiteboards were first commercially manufactured in 1966 and gained popularity in the mid-1990s. Currently, melamine is the most common whiteboard material.
HISTORY OF WHITEBOARDS AND ASSOCIATED MARKERS
- Whiteboards were first commercially manufactured in 1966.
- Initial whiteboards went relatively unnoticed since they had to be cleaned with a damp cloth and were easily stained by markers.
- The markers used on whiteboards back in the 1960s used to leave a shadow of what was written earlier despite being cleaned afterward.
- With the invention of the dry erase markers in 1975, whiteboards started gaining momentum.
- Whiteboard gained popularity in the mid-1990s with applications in school classrooms, offices, and industrial sites.
- Currently, whiteboards have completely replaced the classic chalkboards in classrooms, offices, hospitals, conference rooms, sports facilities, and factory floors.
- The first whiteboard pen was invented by Jerry Woolf in 1975.
- Initial whiteboard pens were bulky and were available in black, red, blue, and green colors. Later variants were thinner, had a less unpleasant odor, and came in many colors.
- Whiteboards can be made of a wide range of materials, though the most common ones are melamine, painted steel, enameled steel, aluminum, and porcelain.
- Enameled steel or porcelain was the original whiteboard material back in the 1960s and continues to be popular till date. Enameled steel board are designed for heavy-duty use and can usually be found in universities, schools, and training centers.
- Currently, melamine is the most common whiteboard material.
- Laminated chipboard is another type of inexpensive whiteboards that come with a laminated surface and get easily stained. They have a short lifespan and are not intended for heavy-duty use. Hence, they are not widely used in schools, hospitals, or offices.
- Painted aluminum and steel boards have smoother surfaces and are convenient to clean as compared to melamine boards.
- Prior to the whiteboard pens or dry erase markers, wet-erase markers were used on whiteboards.
- After the use of wet-erase markers, the whiteboard had to be cleaned using a wet cloth.
- The ink used in dry erase markers is made of color pigments, a chemical solvent, and a polymer.
- Dry erase markers use an oily silicone polymer.
WHITEBOARD MARKET SIZE AND APPLICATION
- The global whiteboard market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 3.1% and reach $3,026.8 million by 2023.
- The largest demand for whiteboards currently come from schools, and the office segment is expected to have the fastest growth in the following years.
- In 2016, porcelain held the largest share in the whiteboard market in terms of materials.
- Since the 2000s, electronic or digital whiteboards have come into play.
- These digital whiteboards are designed for a niche market, generally for companies that have a substantial IT budget.
- Digital whiteboards are also used in smart classrooms where teachers use well-designed software to project colorful visuals on the board.
Even after exhaustive research, we could not find detailed information on how whiteboards and whiteboard markers have changed over time and information on whether specific markers work best on certain whiteboard surfaces. We started our research by looking into industry publications and knowledge databases. Through this strategy, we were able to find useful information around the history of whiteboards and markers, the materials used for both of them, and how their popularity has grown since their introduction. However, these sources did not provide detailed information on how the whiteboards and whiteboard markers changed over time and information on whether specific markers work best on certain whiteboard surfaces.
To find the missing information, we looked into market reports and studies on whiteboards and whiteboard markers. The idea was to find any changes in whiteboards and markers as a result of any past or ongoing market trends. We came across a report that provided us with information on the current market trends in the whiteboard industry in terms of the end-use segment, materials used, and market sizes. However, the report did not provide any information on how the whiteboards and whiteboard markers changed over time and information on whether specific markers work best on certain whiteboard surfaces.
Finally, we looked into media articles and publications that would provide us with the missing information. We went beyond the regular time frame of two years because of the type of information requested. The idea was to find any article describing the changes in whiteboards and markers over the years and any notable innovations. We came across an article that provided information on how the education system evolved from the use of clay tablets to the whiteboard and now digital whiteboards. However, the article did not mention any other innovations or changes happening specific to the whiteboards apart from the same evolving into a digital whiteboard.
After exhaustive research on public domain about whiteboard and whiteboard markers, we concluded that limited information is available on any specific changes, innovations, and material-specific information—specifically which type of markers work best on which whiteboard surfaces—on whiteboards and markers. One of the probable reasons for the unavailability of such information could be that there have not been any significant changes or innovations in whiteboards and whiteboard markers since their introduction.