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Globe and Google partner for digital learning

Another tool for the new normal

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The Coronavirus pandemic has forced everyone to adjust to a new normal, this includes the education sector. To help ease everyone into either blended or full-time online learning, Globe and Google forged a partnership to address the matter.

Following the Philippine government’s quarantine guidelines, Globe is partnering with Google for Education, to meet the growing demand for better academic services and transform the digital learning experience.

Through the partnership, Globe will provide a comprehensive onboarding process, tailor-made teacher training, and strong after-sales support for partner schools and institutions nationwide.

Going to this website will show the various online learning tools that Globe has on offer. These include crafting new teaching materials for teachers and the more straightforward access to information through Globe’s telco services.

Google for Education

Google for Education is an ecosystem of products, programs, and training grounded on the platform’s innovative tools and resources. The services are listed below.

G Suite for Education

This platform offers best-in-class productivity tools built for the classroom, including Gmail, Classroom, Docs, Spreadsheets, Slides, and Drive. Cloud-based technology allows for collaborative learning, so teachers and students can work on lessons simultaneously.

Classroom

The Google Classroom makes the teaching experience more seamless for educators. Here, teachers can create and manage assignments with ease. Classwork pages organize assignments into modules, so educators can better facilitate discussions. They can also use built-in grading tools to sync test results and feedback in one location. Originality reports can analyze authenticity in papers and flag statements that need citations.

Meet

This service allows teachers to connect with students virtually through secure video calls and messaging. Each classroom can have up to 250 participants per call and up to 100,000 live stream viewers. Meet also makes it easier for both teachers and students to join a classroom, as each class can have a dedicated meeting space with a unique link.

Socratic

Google’s AI-powered tutor helps students navigate the learning process through high-quality videos, concept explanations, and online resources. The platform also offers curated subject guides for quick reference. When students need clarification, they can use the built-in voice and photo input to ask a question.

Read Along

Students can improve their literacy skills through this speech-based reading tutor. This platform provides an expressive and animated reading assistant to keep students engaged and help them in their reading journey. Educators can listen to a student read aloud and provide corrective feedback.

Google Forms

Teachers can create forms, surveys, and quizzes using Google Forms. Through G Suite Integration, they can import questions from Docs and Sheets. Grading is also now faster, easier, and automated as they can view results in a chart, graph, or spreadsheet format. To maintain integrity, locked mode prevents students from browsing other websites during a test.

Chromebook

This secure, simple, and powerful device is easy for schools to set up and manage. The Chrome Education upgrade unlocks the full capabilities of the device to help both students and teachers thrive in the new normal. The App Hub connects educators with Chrome-verified developers to access useful tips and content by grade, subject, and educational goals.

G Suite Enterprise for Education

Academic institutions can upgrade their digital environment with educational tools and security controls. G Suite Enterprise elevates both teaching and learning through an institution-wide email database using GMail, security and administration controls, and eDiscovery for emails, chat, and files. Schools can also access a 24/7 support platform via phone, email, and online.

We’re all adjusting to a new normal and this Globe and Google partnership hopes to help with that especially when it comes to education.

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US wants to secure itself from Chinese companies, apps via a Clean Network

An American internet firewall?

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ByteDance-owned TikTok is the hottest topic in the news right now due to its Chinese roots. The US wants to distance itself from these Chinese companies and apps to ensure there are no data backdoors or infiltrations. It intends to do so with a new concept dubbed Clean Network.

The US wants to establish a clear line that ensures data of American citizens doesn’t land in Chinese hands. President Trump has already threatened to ban TikTok and ByteDance is scrambling to find a taker for its US, New Zealand, Canada, and Australian services.

“With parent companies based in China, apps like TikTok, WeChat, and others are significant threats to personal data of American citizens, not to mention tools for the Chinese Communist Party content censorship,” Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo said. He added that apps from China threaten privacy and spread malware, propaganda, and disinformation.

The Clean Network will ensure there are no Chinese components or devices in the telecom network. Similarly, the US will try to prevent China from accessing raw data from submarine cables that power the internet. For cloud setups, it’ll ensure that data of American citizens are saved on local infrastructure, avoiding Chinese players like Alibaba Cloud.

Telecom giant Huawei has been under the scanner since last year and the recent developments are definitely not in its favor. The Chinese phone maker is barred from using Google Mobile Services on Android, derailing its dominance on the global stage. With the ongoing hostility, other countries like India have also taken a hard stance against Chinese companies.

The US is also lobbying its strategic allies to ditch Chinese equipment citing security and privacy concerns. Practically, Huawei is the most hit in terms of revenue lost, followed by other companies like ZTE. While ByteDance can save some of its investment in TikTok thanks to a possible takeover by Microsoft, Huawei has no such cushion available.

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Google adds Safe Folder to Files app

For more privacy and security

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Have you ever had to lend your phone to a friend or family member for a quick minute, only to realize that — intentionally or not — they have started browsing on your phone. Smartphones are personal devices, and thus, might contain files that you don’t exactly want other people seeing. This is the situation that Google is trying to address with the Safe Folder.

Safe Folder is a secure 4-digit PIN-encrypted folder. It helps users store important documents, images, videos and audio files securely. This helps in keeping their personal files safe from being accessed by someone else.

The folder won’t allow users to take screenshots or screen recordings of its contents. It’s also locked as soon as users switch away from the app.  This means no content is accessible in the background and the PIN is required upon re-entry to the Files app.

Google didn’t just come up with this out of the blue. They conducted research and found that in certain countries — especially those with limited smartphone access — device sharing is a common occurrence.

Asked if this is a feature that can be extended to apps installed on the phone too, the Google representatives discussing the Safe Folder feature said they understand the need but can’t speak to any implementation or development of such.

That said, this is still a welcome addition for anyone who has ever encountered this scenario.

SEE ALSO: Nearby Share which is ‘Google’s AirDrop’ now rolling out

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Nearby Share which is ‘Google’s AirDrop’ now rolling out

Now supporting Pixel and Samsung phones

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After a long time in development, Google’s Nearby Share feature is now available on some Pixel and Samsung phones. The file-sharing feature enables direct transfer of files locally, improving speed as well as ease-of-use.

Apple’s iOS and macOS have a feature called AirDrop for a very long time now. Using local WiFi protocol, any large file can be swiftly transferred within the ecosystem. Android users have long been asking for a similar feature and it’s now available on a few phones.

If you want to share a file, just tap share, and wait for the nearby device to show-up. Select the device and the file will be off within a few seconds. This eliminates the need to upload the file on a cloud and later download it on another device. Bluetooth connection is radically slower than WiFi protocol and hence cannot be used for larger files.

The concept is on the same lines as third-party apps like Xender or Me Share. But, with a direct app from Google, Nearby Share can become a deeply rooted part of the operating system, much like the Play Store.

The receiving device will always have the option to “accept” or “decline” the file, so files are never transferred without explicit confirmation. However, the best part about Nearby Share is its cross-platform compatibility. It’ll work with Chromebooks, Windows, and Chrome browser. iOS support isn’t mentioned yet.

Nearby Share leverages Bluetooth and location, along with WebRTC, or peer-to-peer WiFi sharing. Lastly, the feature is backed by Google Play Services, so Huawei phones will again miss out on a simple app.

Although, Chinese tech giants like OPPO, vivo, Xiaomi, realme, and more have created a consortium that shall support a similar file sharing app seamlessly across all their devices. Google is quite late to the game and these Android phone makers were kind of tired of waiting.

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