Google Announces Some Education Milestones of its Own

Posted on January 22, 2019 by Paul Thurrott in Chrome OS, Chromebook, Google with 30 Comments

Microsoft isn’t the only one pushing its education efforts this week at BET: Google has announced some interesting data of its own.

“It started with an idea in 2006,” Google director John Vamvakitis writes. “How might teaching and learning improve if we brought Google’s suite of productivity tools to schools?”

I suspect the question was more like, “How might Google thwart Microsoft in this key market?” … but whatever. No one can refute the impact that Google services and Chromebooks have had on education. But what we have now are some hard numbers.

Google claims that 80 million educators and students around the world now use G Suite for Education. That compares to 155 million active users of Microsoft’s Office 365 for Education.

Meanwhile, 40 million students and educators rely on Google Classroom to stay organized and support creative teaching techniques, Google says. Here, the comparison is unclear, but Microsoft says that there are over 16 million monthly active users of Microsoft Teams, and that Teams has seen 251 percent growth in education in the last year. Microsoft does have other related offerings, however, like Flipgrid, which picks up over 80,000 new educators every month.

Most interesting, perhaps, 30 million students and educators use Chromebooks both inside and outside the classroom. The only number I have to compare this to is the 1 million new Windows 10 PCs that come online every month. So the total number—whatever it is—has jumped by 24 million units over the past two years. I suspect there are some triple-digit number of Windows PCs in use in education overall.

Google is also highlighting something I’ve been warning about for years: Chromebook usage growth isn’t just relegated to the United States, as many continue to believe. Instead, Chromebook is seeing strong growth in Asia Pacific, Australia, New Zealand, Latin America, and Europe as well.

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