Invites have just dropped for Microsoft’s latest press conference. Details are scant for the “Learn What’s Next” event happening May 2 in New York City, but between the title and the big #MicrosoftEDU hashtag that graces the crudely colored artwork, this looks to be focused on the company’s next big play at the education sector.
Back in January, the company detailed Intune for Education, a cloud-based device management system aimed at addressing one of the its chief shortcomings with regards to school. Chromebooks have seen a massive marketshare increase in US schools over the last several years thanks in part to their management system, which lets IT departments control and configure a slew of devices all at once – and makes it possible to swap devices between student without privacy or security compromises.
Chrome’s other big selling point, naturally, is pricing, and the company fittingly also promised to offer up $189 Windows 10 systems aimed specifically to compete with Chromebooks. This event seems likely to serve as a continuation of that news, as Microsoft works to leverage its own offerings to provide an all-in-one education system that can compete head-to-head with Google’s increasingly popular offering.
But while it seems likely that both hardware and software will be present at the event, we’ve heard from sources close to the company that it’s “highly unlikely” that a Surface Phone or new Surface Pro will be present at the press conference, in spite of rumors to the contrary.
So, the whole thing will likely go down similar to the recent Windows 10 Creators Update event in NYC, albeit with less of a focus on the hot newness in the consumer electronics hardware department. Instead, press conference looks better positioned to offer up solutions designed to focus specifically on the education sector.