Most of today's education technology startups are doomed to fail.
"But wait!" you say. "It's 2012 and edtech startups are sprouting up everywhere, pushing real innovation into a slow-moving yet vitally important market, gaining traction, getting funded!"
True. Yet they are still doomed to fail. While any young company faces risk, most of today's edtech companies will fail because:They're chasing a trendy space without true, lasting passion for education; They lack a business model that works in education and are afraid to charge their customers; Their investors have consumer Internet expectations in a market with completely different dynamics; It's easier to build novel technology than to deeply engage with students and teachers to understand their fundamental needs.
That's the bad news. The good news is that some of today's edtech startups will be wildly successful. They will change the face of education. But we don't think they will look much like their successful consumer Internet counterparts.