At the Google Cloud Next conference in London, Google's Prabhakar Raghavan, Vice President of Google's G Suite, which includes Docs and Sheets, held an interview with Business Insider. During the interview, Raghavan spoke about Microsoft's Windows 10 S and Surface Laptop, two new products that the company announced this week at its education event. Windows 10 S provides a slimmed-down version of the standard Windows 10 operating system, only permitting installation of apps via the Windows Store, while the Surface Laptop is aimed at those in education, particularly of a higher level. Both of which are similar to Google's Chrome OS and Chromebook offerings respectively.
Of Microsoft's approach into a Google-dominated arena, Raghavan said he's "happy to see a validation of the approach we've taken," while going on to say:
What educational institutions have demanded is simplicity. It's a real test tube for all of us, whether it's Microsoft or any of us, right
Continuing, Raghavan explained how the Chromebook came about and what has led its development, speaking of how kids interact with technology and the research Google conducted:
Because kids do things in amazing ways where you or I would never expect. So here's one of the things we've learned in a study of kids as we were developing all our tools for classrooms, right. We would put a Chromebook in front of a kid, they would whip out their phone and write their essay. We said 'no no no, there's a keyboard there, you can use it,' and they still write the essay there. They said 'we'll use the keyboard to touch up the formatting, but it'll be much faster here,' right. This is something we consistently learned when we looked at pre-teens ... these kids are really forerunners, the vanguards of human evolution, in some sense, and so it's great to see that some of the approaches we've taken, but I think the world is going to keep evolving and it's a scramble for us to keep up with what people are going to do.
Judging by Raghavan's remarks, the company isn't too worried about Microsoft's renewed push into the educational space, although, Microsoft seemingly believes it has a chance to usher in the area.