Microsoft loses ground in schools race

1920-track_field_bellcounty_30yd_dashSoftware giant Microsoft is losing ground to the likes of Apple and Google in the race to get its gear into schools.

According to consultant Pablo Valerio,  the reason is nothing to do with marketing to kids and parents, but because it is falling short when it comes to providing teaching apps and its licencing arrangements.

Apple’s Teacher Tools and Google’s Chromebook Management Console are fuelling the adoption of Chromebooks and iPads, leaving Microsoft behind.

The recent Microsoft TechEd Europe event showed that Microsoft was close to sorting out the lack of Apps with the upcoming Windows 10 operating system.

However, Microsoft has not solved the issue of having to purchase a licence for each user as each user that logs into a device will use a licence, so that license will be taken down and it would not go back dynamically.

This will cause a heavy bill for schools with limited numbers of computers and hundreds of students using them.

Google Chromebooks have Chrome OS with specific tools for schools to manage the devices, their apps and users. Its Chromebooks for Education program is helping schools deploy large numbers of devices with an easy management system.

While it is possible to buy a small Windows laptop for about the same price of a basic Chromebook, the associated management and support costs are enormous in comparison. Also Chromebooks are pre-loaded with apps such as Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides, with similar functionality to Microsoft’s Office.

Apple is the leader in the education market thanks to having the biggest collection of education apps available today, plus some unique management tools, some by Apple and some by MDM providers such as AirWatch, he said.