Google has announced a new Chrome OS update coming in March that will add a screen recording tool to help students and teachers record virtual lessons.
Along with the new recording tool, Google detailed several education and accessibility tools to help Chromebook users.
When the screen record tool arrives in March, users can call up an on-screen control bar with options for capturing an image of the screen or a recording. Although Google didn’t explain how exactly it would work (or what buttons users would need to press), a GIF shared by the search giant shows the control bar with options for recording the full display, a section of the screen or a specific window.
It’s possible users will be able to access the feature the same way they’d take a screenshot, but we’ll likely learn more with the March Chrome OS update.
Aside from the screen record tool, Google detailed improvements coming to its ‘ChromeVox’ screen reader accessibility tool. ChromeVox will soon offer improved tutorials, allow users to search its menus and automatically change its voice depending on the text’s language.
Google says it’s making significant improvements to audio, video and reliability in Meet on Chromebooks. The changes should make the video conferencing software work better for all Chromebook users.
Finally, Chrome OS will soon allow parents to add their kids’ school accounts to the ‘Family Link‘ app. That change will allow parents to set various guidelines like screen time limits on Chromebooks even if their child uses their school account.
New hardware and resources to pick the right Chromebook
Google also announced a slew of new Chromebook hardware on the way. The search giant says it’s launching more than 40 new Chromebooks, many of which are convertible 2-in-1s, come with a stylus, touchscreen, dual cameras and more.
To help schools make sense of all the Chromebooks available, Google launched a document that runs through available Chromebooks and classifies them into categories like ‘Basic Classroom Use,’ ‘Learning Anywhere’ and ‘Advanced Use.’ The resource should make it easier for schools to pick out the right hardware for students.
Google’s education focus shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Chromebook sales doubled last year, likely thanks to increased demand from people forced to work- or learn-from-home during the pandemic. Throughout 2020, Google changed how it offered services to make it more accessible for educators doing online schooling. For example, the company made Google Meet conferences with up to 100 people available to anyone with a Google account.