Google is the Starbucks of the Internet and then some. Google Education is the largest conglomerate of Educational software and computer (Chromebook) sales to schools in the nation and will remain so for the unforeseeable future. According to 2017, CNN tech report, Google's Chromebooks made up 58% of all sales to schools in the United States. (Kelly, H, 2017, CNNtech) and both apple, HP and other PC computer sales have seen painful drops in revenues since the arrival of the Chromebook. Chromebooks, comparably, are not only cheaper than other popular manufacturers but come with an additional benefit of a free Google Classroom management platform (G Suite) that gives educators several tech tools to use in the classroom. G Suite has a vast array of products that are useful for 21st-century teaching and learning and are housed in one place for teachers to easily access.
Educational hardware and software are big business and for School Districts, Google products price point is undeniably better than all competitors. Combine that with the business of State mandated testing. In California, all mandated State testing (MAP test) requires a computer. Computer-based MAP testing replaced Star tests that were performed with traditional paper and pencil tests. Alas, Google marketers saw what was coming and capitalized on the testing market before their competitors woke up. Now Apple and HP are trying to regain their lost market shares, but this is not going to be easy. Why? because Google responded with a Classroom Management system that outperforms most other products and has been driven by educators needs and responses and was even field tested in the U.S. public school system.
Chromebook's $30 per computer contract includes free access to Google G suite for Education with applications such as Google Doc's, Sheets, Forms, Sites, Calendar, Gmail, and others. These apps can replace Microsoft Word and XL spreadsheets, Outlook calendar and email, Survey Monkey and WIX or Weebly website creators which individually cost much more. In addition, All of Google's free apps are shareable and assessable through a Google Drive. Microsoft and other companies often have proprietary barriers and are not interchangeable with other products. Google is also acquiring many emerging technologies to add to their repertoire of products for the Educational market. Pear Deck (one of my favorites), and Quizlet are now able to integrate into Google G suite products.
Whether one views Google as the largest and fasted monopoly on the planet or a responsive educational reformer, Google is the platform that seems to have stuck within our educational system. Like Social media such as Facebook, Twitter, or Snapchat, using these apps became apart of one's daily routine. Google's classroom platform will remain the popular tool in most classrooms today and into the unforeseeable future
For more in-depth information about the Google in Education debate open the following links.
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I am a 25+ Classroom teacher and have been using technology in my classroom for about 10 years. I love creative ways to learn, and I'm always looking for great ideas, student projects and engagement activities to share in the classroom.
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