Launched in 2013, Google Play for Education was meant as a way to encourage the use of tablets in the classroom. Now, the program is no more.
Speaking to TechCrunch, Google issued the following statement about the shutdown:
As of March 14 or later, Google will no longer sell Google Play for Education licenses. We’re committed to providing schools with the best-in-class tools for the classroom, including Chromebooks, which are the #1 selling device in US K-12 education, and a strong and growing ecosystem of educational apps. We’ll continue to support our Google Play for Education customers and the devices that they have purchased.
Teachers that are currently using Google Play for Education should expect the company to support the program long-term since it gave no timeline for when the program would end for existing users. Google has only made it available in the US, UK and Canada.
While it’s disappointing that Google would discontinue a program meant for helping kids to learn, it’s increasingly clear the company’s focus is on Chromebooks in the classroom rather than mobile devices.