Google recently held an event in New York City and announced three new products: Pixel 3, Slate, and Home Hub.
While these devices aren’t directly aimed at home education, I thought I’d write down some initial thoughts I had about each and how you could use them in homeschooling.
Google Pixel 3 and 3 XL
The latest flagship smartphone from Google comes in two form factors: a notch-less 5.5″ screen and a notched 6.3″ display. Both smartphones feature the same cameras and processing capabilities. The Pixel 3 XL does have a way to “hide” the notch through a setting in the OS.
Nothing really stands out as far as educational use other than the fact that you could install educational apps for your kids to use.
The basic Pixel 3 starts at $799 for a 64GB version and the Pixel 3 XL starts at $899. Both smartphones include a fast charger, USB-C cable, USB-C headphones, USB-C to USB-A adapter, and a USB-C to 3.5mm headphones adapter.
Google Home Hub
This is an interesting little device. It fits somewhere between a Google Home Mini and a tablet. This little device can sit on your kitchen counter, on an end table in your bedroom, or in your family room.
You can use it to look up instructional videos on YouTube or give you update on the latest news.
Google has created Routines you can customize (like Alexa skills) that can be configured with Google Home. You could add a “Word of the Day” routine for your kids or daily news headlines.
YouTube has been optimized for the Home Hub and I think it’s a great way for your kids to look up educational videos without having to sit in front of the computer.
Google Home Hub is available for pre-order for $149. (I’d wait to see if the price to drops ahead of Christmas).
Google Pixel Slate
Of all the devices announced, this is the one that will have the best application in homeschooling. The Pixel Slate is a 12.3″ tablet that runs Chrome OS.
Starting at $599, this could be a reasonable laptop replacement for your kids. Pair it with a keyboard and you have something that your kids can use for multiple purposes.
It has an optional keyboard but the price seems pretty high ($199). You can get a much nicer Bluetooth keyboard for a third of the price (I recommend the Logitech K480).
Prices for the Google Pixel Slate vary depending on how you want it configured.
Although there were no major announcements regarding the education use of these devices, look for information to emerge about the use of the Google Home Hub and Pixel Slate for educational purposes.
Most likely, there are hidden features and settings that are waiting to be found that homeschoolers can take advantage of. I’ll be keeping an eye on how these devices are being used by public and home educators.
What do you think? Share your thoughts in the comments below.