Chromebooks for Education looks like it’s finally receiving the adoption it deserves. In the latest post on Google’s official Enterprise blog, the company has proudly announced that 2,000 schools are now using Chromebooks in classes, a 100% increase in just three months.
Jaime Casap, global education evangelist at Google, has listed a few schools that have recently jumped on the bandwagon as part of this significant achievement: Transylvania County Schools in North Carolina arranging for 900 devices, St. Thomas Aquinas High School deploying 2,200 devices for its one-to-one laptop program, and school network Rocketship Education in San Francisco Bay Area bringing in 1,100 Chromebooks to boost their transformative teaching method. No other schools are mentioned, which invites the likelihood that other schools are only deploying a few hundred as part of a trial.
The blog post continues to talk about how the year 2012 was a good year to kick-start learning through the web platform and the use of technology by students and teachers for collaboration in class, from home, and with global reach. At the 2013 Florida Education Technology Conference, where Casap was among many who hosted a panel, educators shared how the web allowed tech support internships, remote collaboration, and students becoming digital leaders. Casap has also visited London and one of the most important education technology conferences – BETT – where educators who adopted the Chromebook have related similar benefits for students.
There are a couple of reasons as to why Chromebooks are an excellent choice among educational institutions. For one, the devices can be bought at bargain prices such as Acer’s C7 that only costs $199. Savings can reach up to $4000 throughout a three-year ownership according to Google’s estimates. Note that that calculation is just for a single device alone. Another perk is the Chromebooks’ built-in security. A checkup on system boot certifies that all encrypted data has not been tampered and will automatically perform repairs once malicious software is found to corrupt the system. Don’t forget the suite of cloud-based services by Google (Gmail, Google Docs, etc.) as well as apps in the Chrome Web Store that are specialized for education.
The academe is not the only place where the Chromebooks are enjoying healthy sales. Acer reportedly puts Chromebooks to be one of its strong and successful products. In contrast, the company president Jim Wong has commented on how the launch of Windows 8 failed to bring back growth to the market. Other companies such as Lenovo and HP have also shown interest for Google’s cheaper alternative to Windows-based laptops.