Microsoft is taking its fight with Google into the classroom. The company is already offering bulk discounts on its Surface RT tablet for schools. Now, it’s rolled out a specialized version of its perennial second-place search engine Bing.
Bing’s biggest edge over Google in the classroom may be the fact that it’s ad-free. However, Microsoft is also offering strict filtering settings for the search engine that it says go beyond anything Google offers schools to block inappropriate topics in search filters and on YouTube. Finally, Microsoft is promoting Bing by offering schools the potential to win free Surface RT tablets by using the search engine.
Microsoft’s ad-free version of Bing launches for 800,000 students today, giving their schools the opportunity to win free tablets by accruing credits. One Surface RT equals 30,000 credits, which the company says should take 60 students about one month to save up. For smaller schools this hardly seems worth it, while for bigger ones there’s potential to rack up a decent number of tablets. Though, using Microsoft’s own math, a school could potentially get 12 free Surface RT tablets in 12 months, which means the school will have a dozen outdated tablets. Maybe it will apply to new models, too?