Over a year ago, Google announced (opens in new tab) that its Chromebooks had supported more than 50 million students and teachers worldwide to access digital education – a new trend that has continued to grow since the pandemic.
Today, education remains one of the company’s key focuses, with a series of Google Chrome updates clearly targeted at making online learning more intuitive.
At education technology exhibition BETT 2023, Google has announced a series of accessibility and collaboration updates for its browser and Google Workspace platform, with a rather unsurprising entry from the world of AI, along with 13 new Chromebook models.
Google Chrome in the classroom
With Google Docs becoming an increasingly popular tool for digital learning in the classroom, it will soon gain support for timers, a stopwatch, and voting chips.
For remote and hybrid lessons, presentation software Google Slides is soon set to get a co-presenter mode while Meet plans to use artificial intelligence to recognize a physical hand raise and flag it digitally to ensure that participants get seen and heard.
Sometimes, websites can be challenging to digest and individuals with reading disabilities like dyslexia feel this the most. Google hopes that reading mode, which is designed to remove unnecessary distractions, will do the trick. Users can further customize things like typeface, font size, spacing, and text and background color, however it’s worth noting that this is something that other web browsers like Safari have been doing for some time already.
BETT also saw Google trying to appeal to teachers by offering new ways to assess learning, with the introduction of interactive questions that can be added to YouTube videos in Classroom and AI designed to provide customized support for practice sets.
While any teacher will tell you that there’s a long way to go before all needs are met, it seems that Google has been the most keen to develop leading it to be one of the most popular ecosystems in the classroom, giving it an upper hand over its rivals.