education Stories June 27, 2016

project-bloks

Google has long offered tools to teach kids coding skills, and Apple introduced an app with similar ambitions called Swift Playground at WWDC. Now, in collaboration with Stanford and IDEO, Google has announced a new project that makes learning how to code physical and easier to understand. Project Bloks aims to create an open hardware platform to allow others to build physical coding experiences…

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education Stories June 20, 2016

chromebookDespite having been mocked because of its browser-only OS limitation, Chromebooks have seen an astonishing degree of success in certain sectors including education, mostly due to the combination of high efficiency and low costs.

But when MacBook enclaves Apple CEO Tim Cook‘s old high school start making “the switch” to Chromebooks from MacBooks, we take notice…

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education Stories March 16, 2016

Google Hangouts now lets App customers video chat with up to 25 participants

You’ll soon be able to hold video chat meetings with much larger groups as today Google begins increasing the number of participants Apps customers can have in a Google Hangouts video call at any one time. The old limit of 10 participants today gets increased to 25 users.

The change comes to Apps customers only— Business, Government, and Education—  while all other Hangouts users will still have the old limit of 10 participants for video.

Google notes that it will only show “the 10 most active video call participants” along the bottom of the video chat to maintain quality, but it will switch on the fly between active users for the new limit of up to 25 participants.

All Apps customers should start to see the new participant limit increase roll out over the next few days.

education Stories January 13, 2016

chromebooks1

Apple for a time led the tech market in education, even making education-specific Mac models. More recently, the company made a big push on iPads, signing a $30M deal (that would eventually have been worth a quarter of a billion dollars) in 2013 to equip every student in the LA Unified School District with an iPad.

If that program had succeeded, it would have created a template for rolling out similar ones across the whole of the USA. Instead, it failed catastrophically, and it now appears that Chromebooks are winning where iPads have failed.

CNBC reported last month that Chromebooks now make up more than half of all devices in U.S. classrooms, while Apple’s share of classroom purchases more than halved between 2012 and 2015. Why is that, and what – if anything – can Apple do to reverse the trend … ?

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education Stories December 4, 2015

Chromebooks1

Chromebooks have emerged as the clear leader in the classroom, reports CNBC, leaving former market leader Apple for dust.

Chromebooks now make up more than half of all devices in U.S. classrooms, up from less than 1 percent in 2012, according to a new report from Futuresource Consulting […]

Google’s rapid gains come at the expense of its biggest rivals. Over the past three years, Apple’s market share been slashed by more than half, from 52 to 24 percent and Microsoft’s market share has slipped from 43 to 24 percent.

Chromebooks now make up 4.4M of the 8.9M devices sold to schools and school districts, with Google noting that it is seeing the dual benefit of both increased market share and overall growth in demand for computing devices in schools …  expand full story

education Stories December 2, 2015

eff-chromebooks

Privacy campaigners the Electronic Frontier Foundation have filed a formal complaint with the FTC, claiming that Google “deceptively tracks students’ Internet browsing.” They say that Google is in breach of the Student Privacy Pledge the search giant signed back in January. Once Google signed, the terms became legally binding on the company.

The EFF says that one issue is with Chrome Sync, a feature designed to enable users to work with the same bookmarks, logins and other data across devices. Chrome Sync is currently switched on by default on Chromebooks sold to schools, and the EFF says that Google collects this data and uses it for other purposes …  expand full story

education Stories October 6, 2015

Family relaxing in bed together
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Family relaxing in bed together

Updated parental guidelines are needed to help make informed decisions about the use of technology by children, says the American Academy of Pediatrics, as it revealed that more than 30% of U.S. children first use a mobile device while still in diapers. The AAP says that “digital life begins at a young age, and so must parental guidance.”

The Academy says that its existing policy statement was actually drafted before the first iPad was launched, which kickstarted the popularity of tablets as consumer devices. A two-day symposium held earlier this year generated twelve key messages, based not just on limiting screen time but also on distinguishing helpful from harmful use of technology …  expand full story

education Stories September 28, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-09-28 at 6.35.46 PM At its I/O developer conference earlier this year, Google revealed a new app called Expeditions that would allow teachers to create virtual field trips using its Cardboard virtual reality viewer. Details at the time were sparse, but the company today has shared a blog post on its education blog that offers some more details on Expeditions.

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education Stories September 23, 2015

kahn

One of the best things about the Internet is the access it provides to free educational resources, and the Google-backed Khan Academy is one of the best examples. The non-profit launched an iPad app way back in 2012, and has now finally done the same for Android.

“A free, world-class education for anyone, anywhere.” This mission inspires us day in, day out, and we’ve seen over 30M students sign up on Khan Academy to learn almost anything for free. We know you love using Khan Academy more and more on your phones: in fact, over 30% of our sessions are now on mobile devices. We believe strongly that unlocking the potential for anyone, anywhere to learn on 2B+ smartphones worldwide is just getting started. Today Khan Academy is releasing our first Android app along with a redesigned iPhone app

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education Stories August 24, 2015

Back to school season is in full swing and Google is using it as an opportunity to release a bunch of new features and changes for those of its products geared towards educators. Google Classroom has been updated with question-driven discussions, reusable posts, calendar integration, and more. expand full story

education Stories August 3, 2015

Find opportunities to learn computer science with Google’s new online portal

 

Many job openings in the field of computer science go unfilled — not for lack of quality applicants, but due to a lack of any applicants at all. This is a big problem for technology companies, Google included, because it means they have to compete for the few candidates there are with large compensation packages and cushy benefits like on-site masseuses and shuttles to take employees to and from work (both benefits that Google offers). Google in particular has been working hard both to get more people into computer science and also increase the diversity of those going into the field, and today it rolled out an online destination where anyone can go to find computer science learning opportunities.

The new portal, which can be found on the Google for Education website (click here), aims to increase exposure to all kinds of opportunities for one to gain computer science skills — be it through online games, grants, summer camps, etc —  by collecting them in one place and allowing anyone to then sort them by age and region for the highest relevance to ones needs. Google notes in its blog post about the portal that encouragement and exposure can have a direct impact on a child’s interest in pursuing computer science education, and that goes especially for girls. This development is aimed particularly at students, but anyone interested in the field can take advantage of it.

“CS is much more than computer programming and coding— it’s a gateway to creativity and innovation not just in technology but in fields as diverse as music, sports, the arts, and health,” said Google in its blog post about the portal.

education Stories July 16, 2015

We shared last month that a number of changes were coming to Google’s Classroom service for educators and students, and now Google says that one of those changes is rolling out now: mobile alerts. Google says that the Classroom app for both Android and iOS will gain support for mobile notifications this week.

For instance, students will be alerted immediately when they receive new assignments or grades, notes from teachers, comments from fellow classmates, and more—allowing them to stay on top of their schoolwork even more easily.

To support the new notifications feature, Google released an updated version of its Classroom app for Android on the Play Store and iOS on the App Store this week. Google first announced the new alerts feature for Classroom, which it launched last year to help teachers and students manage classwork, alongside other upcoming changes coming to Classroom including a new developer API, a share button for sending work to other services, and the ability to re-use assignments.

education Stories June 29, 2015

Google Classroom API

Google is steadily improving its Classroom feature introduced last year that lets teachers set up lesson plans and students use apps in education. Today Google unveiled a number of improvements coming to Classroom including a developer API, a new share button, mobile notifications, and more. expand full story

education Stories May 21, 2015

ASUS Chromebook C201

Gartner today released the results of a report finding that Chromebooks in 2015 have continued to see double-digit year-over-year growth for Google with education still as the primary market for browser-based computers. 7.3 million Chromebook units are expected to be sold in 2015, a 27 percent increase over 2014, while 72 percent of those sales are expected to be from the education sector.

Screen Shot 2015-05-21 at 9.18.22 AM

In the above chart breaking down Chromebook sales for 2014 by region and segment, you can see education held the lion’s share in all the major markets Google sells to, with consumer sales coming in second, and sales to the business segment trailing far behind – save for in Asia Pacific, where those latter two are reversed. expand full story

education Stories January 21, 2015

Previously leaked, Acer today announced two new Chromebooks aimed at education customers with the introduction of the new Acer Chromebook C910 and Acer Chromebook C740.

Both of the new Chromebooks are being touted as affordable options for the classroom with the C910 featuring a 15.6-display and the C740 offering a more compact design with an 11.6-inch display. expand full story

education Stories January 14, 2015

Google announced today that it’s releasing mobile apps for its Google Classroom service for both Android and iOS devices. The company officially launched Classroom to its Apps for Education customers in the US during the summer offering them a web-based platform for planning lessons, handing out assignments, and working alongside students. Teachers and students will now be able to access those features from mobile devices through the new apps and Google is also adding a could of new features to the platform.

In addition to a new teacher assignments page and archiving functions for Classroom, Google notes that the mobile apps will let users snap a photo to share or attach to assignments, share content from other apps, and access content cached for offline viewing. expand full story

education Stories January 8, 2015

Google Education Access

Google today released what it calls “a guide to activating technology in schools” as part of its education efforts. Intended to assist teachers and IT administrators, Google says the new guide based on what other schools processes provides schools with the following frameworks to bring the web into the classroom. expand full story

education Stories November 30, 2014

Chromebook2_015_Detail2_Titanium Gray

According to the latest data from IDC, Google, for the first time ever, has overtaken Apple in United States schools. The research firm claims that Google shipped 715,000 Chromebooks to schools in the third quarter, while Apple shipped 702,000 iPads to schools. Chromebooks as a whole now account for a quarter of the educational market (via FT).

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education Stories October 14, 2014

Google-Classroom-02

Google just announced some enhancements and new features rolling out to its Google Classroom service today including much improved controls for teachers. Google Classroom, a platform for teachers to plan lessons, assignments, and work alongside students in real-time, was announced earlier this year and first opened to all Apps for Education users in August. expand full story

education Stories August 18, 2014

Google Play textbooks now available to purchase & rent in Canada

Google announced today that it’s launching the ability to purchase and rent textbooks in Canada through its Google Play Books service:

Starting now, students in Canada can rent or purchase digital textbooks from Google Play Books. With thousands of textbooks from top publishers, we have a comprehensive selection of higher education titles from science and mathematics to history and English, and everything in between… With the Google Play Books app, you have convenient tools at hand to make studying simpler and faster. You can instantly search within a textbook for a particular word or phrase, bookmark chapters and pages, highlight and annotate key passages and get quick access to dictionaries, translation tools, Wikipedia and Google search.

Google first started rolling out the feature to Google Play Books in the US last year.

The textbooks library is available through Google Play Books and accessible on Android, iOS devices, and through Google Play on the web. Canadians can head over to Google Play now to purchase or rent textbooks now.

education Stories August 12, 2014

After announcing a preview of “Google Classroom” back in May, today Google has opened up the tool for educators to all Google Apps for Education users. Classroom offers teachers a slick platform to plan lessons, assignments, and work alongside students, and today Google also announced some new features its implemented on advice from educators that have been previewing the software. Google is adding new collaboration tools that allow teachers to work with students while they work on assignments: expand full story

education Stories July 9, 2014

Google announces five ‘Giving through Glass’ winners & their ambitious plans for Glass

Google today announced the winners of its “Giving through Glass” initiative that will see the company work with nonprofits to develop apps for the platform. The winners will not only get Glass, but also “a $25,000 grant, a trip to Google for training, and access to Glass developers who can help make their projects a reality.”

The winners include: 3000 Miles to a Cure, Classroom Champions, The Hearing and Speech Agency, Mark Morris Dance Group and Women’s Audio Mission… Developers are already working with these inspiring groups, and next week these five nonprofits will descend on Google Glass’ Base Camp in San Francisco for training, and to connect with their Google mentors. Stay tuned for updates on how the projects unfold!

Google shared some of the plans that the winners have for Glass. Classroom Champions, for example, will be looking to inspire with an app designed to offer “a look through the eyes of Paralympic athletes as they train and compete.” Others are working on a educational experiences for the classroom as well as Glass apps to help improve the communication process for individuals with speech language challenges, hearing loss and autism.

You can read more about Google’s Giving through Glass initiative here.

education Stories May 14, 2014

Google Glass surgery

The University of California, Irvine School of Medicine will be adding Glass to its four year curriculum as a part of its first and second year anatomy courses and clinical skills training. The school’s faculty feels that Google’s wearable has the ability to fluidly deliver information through voice commands and other means while remaining hands-free. The university will use a proprietary secure software to record and broadcast patient care and student training.

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education Stories May 6, 2014

Classroom

In celebration of Teacher Appreciation Day, Google has announced a preview of Classroom, a new tool that will help educators arrange curriculum for their classes. This free parts of Google’s Apps for Education will serve as a platform that helps teachers create and organize assignments, provide feedback and communicate with their students. As expected, the software will lean on apps like Docs, Drive and Gmail to carry out these tasks.

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education Stories March 3, 2014

Chromebook2-13_013_Dynamic_Titanium Gray

Samsung’s new Chromebooks leaked a little bit last week and again over the weekend, but now they are official.  The biggest upgrades include the form factor featuring the faux leather stitching made famous by its Galaxy Note 3 and a new 1080P 13-inch display on the higher end $399 model. Both still use Exynos 5 Octocore processors that lack a little bit of the oomph of Haswell Intel processors, but they compete very well in battery life (8.5-9 hours claimed by Samsung). These machines also have wake times of less than one second and cold boots in less than ten.

Another prime area of improvement is the Hangouts video chat experience enhance by a 720P front side camera paired with improved mic and 2x 2W speakers. expand full story

education Stories November 27, 2013

Google releases ‘Edu Device Setup’ app for Google Play for Education users

After rolling out Google Play for Education in the U.S. earlier this month— Google’s new service making it easier for educators to distribute apps to multiple Android devices in the classroom— the company has since released the “Google Edu Device Setup” app on Google Play. The app is Google’s official app for educators setting up tablets purchased through the company’s Google Apps for Education program and also allows teachers to enable students to download content from the Edu Play Store.

The app is only available to those with a Google Play for Education administrative account and Google notes it will “only set up Nexus tablets purchased through Google Education.” Google is already supporting the Nexus 7 through the program, and it will begin supporting the ASUS Transformer Pad and the HP Slate 8 Pro early next year.

Description

Quickly and easily set up tablets purchased through Google Apps for Education./n/nAdmins can use this app to enable tablets to receive content from Google Play for Education, as well as transfer the following configuration information:

• A connection to the school’s wifi network (and optional proxy)

• Locked-down, child-appropriate values for key settings (e.g. turning off location sharing)

• An education-specific homescreen

(via AndroidPolice)

education Stories November 4, 2013

Google today announced that its launching a new education initiative that will see students taking “virtual field trips” using Google+ video chat Hangouts. Google explains that it’s now allowing teachers to sign up for the field trips through a program called Connected Classrooms.

Teachers are already using Google+ to make learning more relevant, collaborative and accessible—from exploring a world-class art museum to staging a play to venturing into space. Connected Classrooms aims to make it easier for teachers to access exciting educational content to share with their students. In addition to the virtual field trips, teachers who visit the Connected Classrooms site will have the opportunity to join a Google+ Community with other educators to collaborate on field trips and share best practices for using digital tools in the classroom.

The first locations featured as virtual field trips will include the Seattle Aquarium, the Minnesota Zoo and the Solar Impulse hangar. Google is also partnering with over 20 organizations to that will help organize the field trips, some of which include National Geographic, Matilda the Musical, the Philadelphia Museum of Art.  expand full story

education Stories August 8, 2013

Google-Play-Textbooks

Google announced back in July during its Google I/O keynote that it would be rolling out textbooks to Google Play Books sometime in August and today the AndroidPolice notes listings for textbooks have arrived in the store. The textbooks get their own section in the Google Play Books store, and are currently only available to users in the US.

Google’s new textbooks are available to purchase, but some titles will offer a rental option that allows users to rent the book for a lower-cost over a six month period. Google is also providing free samples for the new textbooks. The service is currently available through the Google Play Books apps on Android, iOS, and on the web.

Google is also piloting a new Google Play for Education service and accepting app submissions ahead of a full roll out.

education Stories May 15, 2013

Google today announced a new service called Google Play for Education that allows schools to easier find and distribute Google Play content to Android devices in schools.

The Google Play Education store will allow schools to search for content by subject matter and grade level and provide content that has been recommended by other educators. Google is teaming up with partners such as NASA and PBS for content but it will also begin accepting app submissions from developers this summer before the education store launches this fall.

Rather than using credit cards in an education environment, teachers will be able to purchase bulk quantities of apps and charge licenses against a balance from the school’s purchase order. The Google Play for Education service will also allow school’s that use Google Apps to instantly distribute an app to multiple devices in a school by setting up a Google Group

Google Play for Education will be launching this fall. You can learn more at https://developers.google.com/edu/.

education Stories October 17, 2012

We know Apple has had a lot of success pushing iPads in education, and during Apple’s Q3 conference call, CEO Tim Cook said the company would continue to be “very aggressive”. Apple’s iPad 2 sales in the K-12 market doubled y-o-y in Q3 thanks to a price drop to $399. In Q2, Apple said it sold about a million iPad units to the United States education market. With Apple’s upcoming iPad mini announcement possibly bringing an even lower price point for iPads in education, Amazon is announcing its plans today to get Kindle tablets into schools.

Reuters reported today that Amazon is launching a service, called “Whispercast”, aimed at allowing schools to easily deploy and manage multiple kindle devices:

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education Stories October 15, 2012

Samsung’s latest product video shows off how the Galaxy Note 10.1 is being used in education by visiting the Institute of Play:

The Institute of Play have only begun to effect sweeping changes to the way education evolves. With the help of Samsung and the Galaxy Note 10.1, we get a glimpse of the incredible impact the Institute’s revolutionary methods are making, and how the potentially bright the future is for students everywhere.

education Stories June 24, 2011

Google has announced today that schools using Google Apps will see their storage increase from 7GB to 25GB. The 25GB can be used across all Google Apps, including Mail, Docs, and Calendar. This update makes me wish my school was using Google Apps. Yes, that’s right..this applies to both teachers and students. That’s a lot of space, but who really needs that much? New Educational Google Apps accounts will see the storage added automatically and existing users will see it in a few weeks. It’s summer anyways.

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