- Google has decided to discontinue its Play for Education platform, but TechCrunch reports that users will still be able to access its partners device management systems in order to transfer Play Store apps to tablets.
- Play for Education has been around since 2013 and was designed to make it easier for teachers to purchase and distribute apps and books on Android tablets.
- The official cut-off date for Google to stop supporting existing Play for Education users is March 14.
The move ultimately means that products in the Play for Education store will not be as accessible on non-Android tablets. It's one more step that should help Chromebooks, which currently come pre-loaded with the Apps for Education suite of tools, continue their decisive market leadership in the classroom device space.
Districts might want to keep an eye on other options, however, before committing to Google. Recently, the tech giant has faced scrutiny from organizations like the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which accused it of improperly collecting student data.
Further, Apple CEO Tim Cook has recently made statements insisting that Apple will challenge Google's position and reclaim its lead with iPads, saying that the tablets "are set apart from the competition by their education-focused native apps and integration with school curriculum." To that end, the iPad's steeper price tag may still end up working against it compared to the Chromebook.