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Google Play for Education Brings Android to the Classroom

SAN FRANCISCO -- It's easy enough to provide kindergarteners with their own tablets, but it's much harder to make sure they're using the right education apps. New app store Google Play for Education, announced by Android Engineering Director Chris Yerga at Google I/O this morning, will make it easy for teachers and administrators to find serious education apps and deploy them to their students.

In a brief demo, Yerga showed how Play for Education will sort apps both by grade level and subject. So if you're looking for science apps that are appropriate for second graders, you can find them. The store will also show related books.

Teachers and school administrators will also be able to create user groups and send a particular app to all the users in that group. Yerga showed how an administrator could choose a math app, click a button and then have it download automatically on 500 students' tablets. Because schools don't purchase materials with credit cards, the Google Play for Education store will accept purchase orders.

Several schools are already testing Play for Education, but the store will officially roll out to everyone this fall. Developers will be able to start submitting their apps for inclusion sometime this summer.