In another sign of Google’s increasing world-domination, Australia’s largest university has just announced its move to the Google Apps suite for all staff and students.
Monash University moved student accounts to the web-based service last November, but have finalised the transition with the announcement that all staff accounts will soon be hosted by Google.
The platform, Google Apps Education Edition is available for free to all education institutions, and delivers advanced technology for university students to communicate and collaborate, “without the cost and complexity of maintaining on-site hardware and software”, according to Google. Google Apps Education Edition is also provided without the ads that many users of Google’s other free email service, gmail, would be familiar with.
The university sees many advantages in adopting the suite across both staff and students, including a common approach to email and collaboration tools, easy-to-use web-based access, accessibility from many mobile devices, and increases to storage capacity.
“Staff and students will be able to share information without software compatibility issues,” says Peter Marshall, vice president of administration. “They will be able to chat in real time, access email and calendar applications via an internet connection or offline, and much of Google Apps functionality is available on mobile devices.”
“By hosting services in the cloud, we can refocus our IT resources on supporting the University’s Research and Education strategies,” adds Jeremy Du Vé, acting chief information officer.