Google is going to shut down its Expeditions virtual reality app. The app is offering educational VR tours to its users. The company is now planning to remove the app from iOS and Android app stores on June 30th, 2021. Google’s separate Arts & Culture app will get “The majority” of its tours and will let the users view them via web or mobile device. Which will be available in 360 on Android and iOS, while the web will provide wider access.
Google published in a blog post, “We’ve heard and recognized that immersive experiences with VR headsets are not always accessible to all learners,” writes Jennifer Holland, Google’s director of education program management. “As Arts & Culture will offer many of the Expeditions tours, we’ll no longer support the Expeditions app.”
“With this product, educators took students on new adventures to experience far-away places, travel back in time or learn about cultures unlike their own. It has been truly magical to see how educators and students alike incorporated our VR tours into their imaginative curriculums” Google added.
In 2015, Google introduced Expeditions for its Cardboard VR viewer and classrooms could get boxes of Cardboard headsets for “virtual field trips.” These tours came with 360-degree panoramas capturing museums, festivals, and far-flung wonders of the world.
The director of the company for education program management, Jennifer Holland, said that she took the decision as a response to the coronavirus pandemic, during this period workplaces and schools started online work around the globe.
Well, it is to be expected that this product evolution to Google Arts & Culture is going to facilitate the educators with a bridge to continue to use immersive content to transform their classrooms and enrich the learning experience for their students.