Zoom cashes in the edtech cheque
Over the course of the past year, video conferencing apps saw a boom. doctors have used it for consultations, companies for work meetings, and educational institutions for teaching.
it became so big that Zoom reported 3.3 trillion annual meeting minutes and 300 million daily meeting participants. this is what companies call habit formation. now, video conferencing apps have become an important tool for post-pandemic meetings. while companies see it as a way to optimise costs by offering remote working jobs to its employees for reduced pay, educational institutions see it as a way to get a wider pool of students.
business schools have been the first to adopt video conferencing apps. according to reports, business schools have realised that a hybrid approach may work well even after the pandemic. a hybrid approach here means that some students will attend classes in person, while others will listen to lectures remotely. thus business schools can expand class size and get diverse students. for those who want to attend university but either can’t afford to live in another country or give up a full-time job, it is a good in-between. another key way in which students learnt was through meeting business leaders; video conferencing makes it easier for students to meet people, ask questions, interact, and learn.
where there is habit formation there are silicon valley companies. NYU’s celebrity professor Scott Galloway had said early in 2020 that the pandemic would create interesting partnerships between tech companies such as Google, Apple, and Facebook, and colleges. the first step for which is now seen in India with the partnership between Byju’s and Google. on the face of it, Google will offer Byju’s teachers and students a business suite so they can interact with each other. but its success also lays the groundwork for deeper partnerships with other universities. Apple, meanwhile, has tied up with universities in the US, such as Fisk University to teach students and the community coding through a specially designed curriculum. while most of these partnerships are currently free, it won’t be long before these become commercial arrangements. Amazon has already started experimenting with test prep.
the pandemic has forced the world to become even smaller and education can be the biggest winner in the post-pandemic economy.