Can Microsoft Return to the Head of the Class in Education?
Years ago, Microsoft was considered to be the premier program for students to gain familiarity with throughout school. They learned how to make spreadsheets, type up an essay, and even create a slideshow from their computer. Every child was familiar with the Microsoft Suite and most of them had access to the programs from home. However, Microsoft has certainly lost a lot of ground to its competitors over the past few years.
While it is possible for Microsoft to return to the head of the class in education, they will have to do a lot of work to catch up. Repairing their shortcomings will be no simple feat unless they can identify where they went wrong initially. Take a look at a few of these areas where Microsoft is behind Google and Apple in the classroom.
Microsoft decided to stick with their current business model.
Moving more technology into the classroom is a recent shift that Microsoft may not have been prepared for. Google took the lead by presenting low-cost laptops and free online software for students to use. Meanwhile, Microsoft didn’t see the need to come up with innovative solutions on the market that was just beginning to develop. Their old business practices worked just fine for them, so there was no need to change them. Competing with new markets may not be as profitable as their previous practice, but it ultimately led to Microsoft missing out on many important opportunities.
In order to return to the head of the class, Microsoft is going to have to start coming up with innovative solutions again. They will have to develop products that can compete with those offered by Google and Apple, including both features and price.
Where are the classroom apps?
Educators are always interested in tools they can use to better manage their classroom on a daily basis. Google found a way to provide a slew of classroom apps for teachers and students. They can use Google Classroom, Google Docs, and far more to create engaging content that is easily shared with students. Even the students can use these tools to write their own papers and work on assignments that are digitally shared with the teacher.
Microsoft does have an online suite of their traditional programs, but few people realize that students can access it for free. From the classroom setting, this easily allows most of the same features as Google Docs. Student access from home is a different story though. If multiple people need to utilize this program from home, parents may need to pay for the home version at $99 per year.
It’s time to plan for the future.
It is possible that Microsoft could return to being head of the classroom once again, but they need to make a move soon. Most schools will quickly tell you that their students are becoming brand loyal to Google. After all, they use their devices, programs, email, and more on a daily basis. It just makes sense to carry on with that train of thought even into adulthood. If Microsoft doesn’t make a strong appearance in the classroom soon, they may not be able to gain their previous popularity.
Microsoft has a few things they need to work on if they plan to be the best technology provider for the classroom once again. With a little innovative research and some new programs that can outperform offerings from Google and Apple, Microsoft could soar into first place. However, it needs to happen soon or they might miss their opportunity.