If you don't work in the education sector or have school-age children, you may have missed Flipgrid or the ever-trending #FlipgridFever. It's made a huge splash in classrooms across the globe, and has now made a particularly important step in joining forces with Microsoft.
But what is Flipgrid?
Flipgrid is a Minneapolis-based social platform aimed squarely at school kids and educators. It's picked up a reputation of being the education sector's answer to Snapchat and Instagram, and the numbers do actually live up to the hype: the firm has reported an 800% year on year growth in teacher accounts.
Put simply, Flipgrid allows for a 'grid' to be made by a teacher, which acts as the classroom or space in which a discussion can start. Students can then post videos, photos and other content into the grid to contribute to the discussion and, before you know it, there's a genuinely dynamic and interesting debate taking place, that students actively enjoy. It works extremely well as it offers something different to the everyday classroom experience — getting students to be creative and collaborative even when the subject matter itself might not necessarily be overly stimulating.
From there, you can also share and enjoy other grids from classrooms and groups across the globe. There are currently subscribers in over 150 countries — so the world is very much the users' proverbial oyster. Such a rise to success is the ultimate arbiter of something actually working; there is no doubt that students and educators alike genuinely love Flipgrid, and getting school children to be interested in education is no mean feat.
It's about to get bigger
Microsoft Education will now be 'democratising' the platform — which is what people in Silicon Valley say when they are offering something free of charge. The move marks a counter-Google manoeuvre from Microsoft EDU as it attempts to win back the clients lost due to the big-hitting Chromebook. It will work along with Minecraft Education Edition for Windows 10 to bolster the Microsoft portfolio further.
Microsoft already provides its Outlook 365 for Education free of charge for schools and will likewise be doing so for Flipgrid, with existing subscribers set to receive a refund. The platform will be integrated into the Microsoft Teams app, and will benefit from a new set of dedicated admins to help them cope with what will almost certainly be an increase in usage and demand.
“We’re thrilled to see the impact Flipgrid has had in social learning thus far and look forward to helping them continue to thrive as part of the Microsoft family,” says Microsoft VP Eran Megiddo. “We’re diligently committed to making sure their platform and products continue to work across the Microsoft, Google and partner ecosystems to benefit students and teachers everywhere.”
With Microsoft on board, Flipgrid will also be announcing a new wave of updates at their annual Flipgrid Live! event in April 2019. Expect further convenience, user-friendliness and 'democratisation' from Microsoft, who will be keen to push Flipgrid to new levels of classroom dominance.
Keen to find out more about how Vuzion can help you and your education customers? Download our free education guide, Transforming the Education Sector with Cloud Solutions, here.