On Wednesday, Google has announced that it is expanding its virtual reality field trips program called the Expeditions Pioneer, which accounts for over 500,000 participants worldwide despite having a limited release.
Previously, schools that wished to participate in the pilot had to "sign up and wait for [the Google Expeditions team] to visit." However, this is about to change as Google is poised to launch the beta version of the Google Expeditions app for Android.
Thanks to the beta version of the Android app, teachers from interested schools will have the option of downloading it to experience the immersive virtual tours on offer. The program will enable more students to get a feel of places and natural wonders they may have not gotten the chance to visit otherwise.
So far, the Expeditions Program's virtual reality software has allowed students in the United States, Canada and Sweden to experience the wonders of Mars and The Great Wall of China. The program has now expanded its destinations to include the Buckingham Palace and The Great Barrier Reef.
With the arrival of the Expeditions app for Android, Google will be able to further the reach of its efforts to bring VR-based field trips for classrooms. The dedicated app will aid schools and educators in taking students on virtual adventures through mobile devices.
How To Sign Up To Be A Beta Tester
Those interested in participating in Expeditions beta can sign up to be considered for the program by filling up the registration form provided by Google. Registrants will be required to give their name, role, school email address and the country they're from. They will need to wait before Google gives the green signal.
Once approved for the beta app, participants will already be able to download the Expeditions app for Android with the help of instructions from Google. The app is compatible with Android-powered tablets and phones and will be easily accessible to selected educators and schools who've successfully signed up for participation.
Participants will also be able to give feedback on the program as well as inputs on places they want to visit virtually and features they would like to see.
"We're looking to you to provide feedback about Expeditions while also spreading the word and teaching other educators about the product. If you're selected, you will receive an email confirmation and instructions for how to download the app. We're hoping you'll help by providing feedback on what you like and on areas we need to improve!" notes Google.