Author’s Note: This blog entry is part of a series I started to explore two of today’s most popular eLearning rapid development tools: Articulate Studio and Adobe Captivate. Here is a link to an article that contains the whole Articulate vs. Captivate series.

In the previous blog entries, we have explored the major features of Articulate and Captivate, and discussed the strengths and limitations of each tool. Of course, there really isn’t a winner. As I wrote at the beginning of this series, the only answer to the question “Which is better?” is “It depends.” The tools have different strengths and the best fit depends on your needs.

And for larger organizations or those with more complex or varied learning needs, the answer to the question “Which should I buy?” is often “Both.”

I’ve created a summary chart that I think clearly highlights the strengths of the two tools. Of course, some of these items can’t be reduced to a simple yes-or-no answer, so in some cases this chart simply reflects my opinion.

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In 2012, we will see new players joining the rapid eLearning tool game. For example, Articulate Storyline and ZebraZapps are already attracting a lot of attention. There is also the possibility of new releases of Articulate Studio, Adobe Captivate, and SmartBuilder.

One of the interesting trends that we have noticed is the rise of mobile learning, and how the rapid eLearning tools are quickly incorporating functionality that gives them the potential to create mLearning content. For example, most of the new tools can publish your project as HTML 5 or in the mp4 video format. This gives eLearning developers an easier path to get a course running on Apple mobile devices such as the iPad.

I expect to see more projects developed with these new tools in 2012 and I will be using them myself for Fredrickson’s Learning business. As always, I’m glad to share my thoughts and findings with you and I appreciate your comments on these blog entries.

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