With coronavirus crisis continue to rage on, and as people continue to carry on with the new normal of working, teaching and learning from home, Google is offering its premium video conferencing tool – Google Meet – free for schools till September 30 to help continue the education.
Following the forced closure of schools and universities over COVID-19 pandemic, tech companies around the world have come forward with several solutions to help students and teachers continue the education amidst the crisis. Among the many, Google Meet has emerged as one of the most popular ones. It provides a streamlined way to connect with people on campus or around the globe. Now, the tool is being widely used by educators across the globe to reach out to their students and colleagues.
According to reports, Google Meet has crossed 50 million downloads on Play Store, a massive 900 percent increase in user base in a span of few weeks. It is said that the tool is currently hosting 3 billion minutes of video meetings and adding roughly 3 million new users every day.
Google has made its ‘G Suite for Education’ features available for students to help them access to online learning and educational tools. The tech giant said it can be used from any device and help more than 120 million teachers and students around the world work and learn together.
Besides the G Suite for Education tool, Google has also launched a new ‘Teach from Home’ hub for teachers with information and resources to help them continue teaching even if schools remain closed. According to the company, the hub includes tutorials, step-by-step guides, and inspiration for distance learning during school closures.
The global tech giant has also launched other programs and apps for kids and families to help them learn together at home during the crisis. The new Kids tab on Google Play was launched to help parents find enriching and engaging apps for their children. Another program ‘Be Internet Awesome’ was launched to help kids learn about digital literacy and online safety. The program features an interactive game, Interland, that reinforces internet safety concepts for kids in a fun and engaging way.
Speaking about the various programs the company has launched, Kristie Canegallo, VP of Trust and Safety at Google, said,
“Our teams are working to provide opportunities for families to learn together at home, including the new YouTube Learn at Home families site, virtual field trips and explorations through Google Arts & Culture, and the global roll-out of our AI-enabled reading app.”
Google has also launched an app called Family Link to help parents create healthy digital habits for their children as they learn, play, and explore online. According to the company, with the app, “parents can keep an eye on screen time with daily limits and a bedtime on Android and Chromebook devices. They can also guide their child to better content with download approvals, per-app time limits and content filters.”
Earlier, the company has made premium features in its Hangouts Meet video-conferencing tool free until July 1 amid the global pandemic.
Meanwhile, if you are a teacher and want to make the most of your virtual meetings with your students or colleagues using Google Meet, follow some useful tips here.