Why Schools Should Buy Chromebook Headphones in Bulk

Teaching has evolved over the decades and with each evolution, new teaching methods emerge. Today, classes operate at maximum capacity meaning we have to leverage on technology to maximize learning and facilitate teaching.

Incorporating technology in the learning environment started when the basic whiteboards were replaced with overhead projectors. Later on tablets replaced textbooks, and today, headphones are sort after to overcome audio challenges in the classroom.

Chromebook laptops have leaped into the classroom setting because of several reasons:

  • Price: A Chromebook delivers the same functionality as most laptops, but comes at a fraction of the cost. That means every student can own a laptop.
  • Security: Chromebooks are the most secure laptops in the world because of how their OS operates. Even world-class hackers tip their hat for the Chrome OS.
  • Reliability: A Chromebook on full battery can handle intensive use for an entire day without charging.
  • Instant Power On: Most laptops take anywhere between a few seconds and whole minutes to boot. Chromebooks boot up instantly meaning kids start learning immediately.

To make Chromebooks even more effective as learning instruments, it’s wise to accessorize them with headphones, preferably ones with built-in microphones. Microphones minimize the distractions normally associated with the school environment, thereby maximizing learning and teaching efforts.

Why Schools Should Buy Chromebook Headphones In Bulk

However, buying headphones in singles as opposed to buying in bulk can create a budgetary nightmare. For starters, buying individual headphones means the school doesn’t enjoy the economies of scale. Rarely will you get a discount when you buy a single item, but when you buy in bulk, the seller always cuts off a percentage off the asking price.

Secondly, by buying the headphones in bulk the school’s spending is limited to one budgetary cycle. For instance, a school can buy several thousand headphones at one go in the beginning of the school year and forget about buying new headphones for an entire school year.

However, buying a few headphones at a time means the school is always accounting for money to acquire new headphones. That’s not workable for most schools and districts due to ongoing budgetary cuts.

How to Choose the Right Headphones for Chromebooks

Now that we agree schools should buy Chromebook headphones in bulk, you might be wondering how you should go about choosing the right Chromebook headphones for a classroom setting.

There are only a few things you should really look into when buying headphones for a classroom. Some of these things are specific to the Chromebook laptops, but they can apply in other cases where you need headphones for classroom settings. Let’s kick off with the general variables you have to take into account.

General Variables

  1. Budget and Longevity

The school’s budget and that of the school district greatly influence purchase decisions. Generally, schools would prefer to spend only once on headphone purchases. Therefore, you’ll have to choose headphones that will last all year long. That includes both testing and actual use.

Ask yourself, how much will it cost the school to purchase headphones for testing and all year-long use? If the cost is a bit high, you may contemplate buying small samples first for testing, and when you get the right headphones that won’t affect the kid’s hearing; you can place a bulk order.

  1. Durability

With schools trying to rein in spending at every possible chance, the only way to get the school or district to commit to Chromebook headphones is with a guarantee from the manufacturer. The manufacturer must be able to guarantee the headphones will survive the war and tear of being folded, stretched and dropped expected among in young students.

  1. Comfort

Learning and testing call for high levels of attention that cannot be attained when an object sits awkwardly on the ears. While trying out different headphones stick with the ones comfortable for the kids. That will help them stay focused and get the most out of their Chromebooks at school. That said, the most comfortable headphones are the over-the-ear models because they sit comfortably and block out noise interference.

Chromebook Specific Variables

  1. USB Type C Connections

Chromebooks sometimes may not have a headphone jack. Instead they have a USB port where you can plug in any media you want to use with the laptop. Therefore you have to make sure the headphones you are about to buy have a USB Type C connector rather than a jack.

  1. Stereo

Almost all Chromebooks support stereo sound transmission. That means audio from the laptops goes over two channels before getting to the output device. Stereo headphones have the advantage of making digital signals sound more naturally than mono headphones.

Does Buying a Chromebook Headphones with A Microphone Worth the Extra Cost?

You are probably vaguely familiar with Chromebooks, Google powered netbooks that cost the same amount as a low end smartphone. If you are a ‘power user’ then you may have dismissed the entire Chromebook species as unworthy of anything other than posting a couple of tweets and checking your email. If you are in this group, let’s look at a couple of reasons why you should buy a Chromebook before we talk about separate headsets for your Chromebook.

Why Buy a Chromebook

You shouldn’t be too quick to judge though. There are dozens of reasons why all major laptop manufacturers have jumped on the Chromebook bandwagon. These Chromebooks come with decent hardware specs, and amazing performance levels. And the good news is, with a few hundred dollars, you can own one. That’s a fraction of the cost you’d pay for an Apple or a Windows laptop.

  1. Chrome OS Runs Doesn’t Gobble Up Computer Resources

The reason why Chromebooks are so cheap is because they Google’s Chrome OS. The OS uses fewer resources, unlike other OSes. That means manufacturers can stick cheap hardware on Chromebooks and sell them for a fraction of the price you’d pay for a traditional laptop.

Does cheaper hardware mean poor performance? In the case of Chromebooks, the answer is a definite no. Chrome OS is basically a modified version of the Chrome browser. That means the OS doesn’t require vast system resources to get things done. In fact, low-end Chromebooks boot instantly, which you cannot say for other laptops. The downside however is, you have to connect your Chromebook to the internet to accomplish most tasks.

  1. Instant Access to Online Apps

Google and other third parties have done a lot improve on this with more and more apps supporting offline use. These apps later synchronize with their respective web services once you reconnect to the internet, so that’s not too much of a disadvantage. Also, the newest version of Chrome OS will support Android applications later on this year.

Therefore, if you find yourself doing most of your work on the internet, it’s very advisable to invest in a Chromebook costing a couple of hundred dollars than buying a laptop that costs thousands more.

Those are just two reasons why you should buy a Chromebook. There are lots of other reasons but hopefully these will convince you Chrome OS is a serious contender. Now, let’s move on to the real meat of the article: Do you need to buy a separate headphones and microphone for your Chromebook?

 

 

You Should Invest in a Headset

Most Chromebooks come with an in-built camera, microphone and speaker. Most of the time they go about their job very well, allowing you to take advantage of Google Hangouts and other voice and video conferencing platforms.

However, some circumstances call for a dedicated pair of headphones and a microphone. Take the following situations for example.

  1. You are on the road and someone calls you on Google Hangouts. Obviously, the built-in microphone and speakers won’t help you very much here because of the noise interference. A separate microphone and mic with noise cancellation allows you to hold your end of the conversation.
  2. You are in the library and you don’t want to disturb others around you. If you use the built-in speaker and microphone pair, everyone around you will shush you. A separate microphone and headphone makes allows you to have discrete conversations without being disturbed or getting on the nerves of everyone else around you.
  3. For teachers and educators, separate headphones and microphones can increase productivity levels in the classroom. A teacher can control the volume settings selecting which audio track students listen too. That may very well put an end to classroom distractions where several speakers talk at once.
  4. You are attending a virtual class. The beauty about virtual classes, or online learning, is that you can study from anywhere. During your lunch break, you can jump into one of these classes and get in an hour of class time. Using the built-in speakers and microphone won’t do you a great deal of service, but a separate headphone and microphone will.

Again, those are some of the benefits of buying separate headphones and microphones with Chromebooks. There are lots of other situation-specific reasons to do this, but it’s worth the extra cost. Also, if you are conscious about how traditional headsets look (at times you look like a lost air traffic controller), there are discreetly designed audio systems that don’t have a protruding microphone.

Can Bluetooth be Hooked up for Headphones on a Chromebook?

Most Chromebooks are Bluetooth-enabled, meaning they can work with all kinds of wireless accessories including earphones. In order to use your wireless earphones, first, check if your Chromebook is Bluetooth enabled. Then you have to pair your Chromebook with your wireless earphones.

Checking Bluetooth support

To check if your Chromebook supports Bluetooth accessories, click on your account profile picture. If your menu shows the ‘Bluetooth on’ or ‘Bluetooth off’ sign then you have a device that can use wireless earphones. This means you can initiate the process of pairing your wireless headphones with your Chromebook.

Pairing a Bluetooth earphone

Before you can use your wireless earphones, first you need to pair it with your Chromebook. Do this by following the steps listed here:

  • Turn on your Chromebook and sign in.
  • Click on your account profile picture.
  • Look for the Bluetooth icon and click on it.
  • You might find that the Bluetooth is on or off. If it is off, click on the Bluetooth icon followed by ‘Enable Bluetooth’.
  • Pick your wireless earphones from the list of accessories to pair with and click ‘Connect’.
  • Follow any instructions given to finish the pairing of the Chromebook with your wireless earphones.

You need to check if your wireless earphones are paired with your Chromebook by looking at the status area. If you can see it listed there, then the pairing is complete.

However, if you are turning on your Chromebook for the first time close to Bluetooth earphones that are turned on, the Chromebook will detect the earphones automatically and help you pair with it.

Troubleshooting Bluetooth problems

You may find you have problems while trying to use your wireless headphones with your Chromebook. To troubleshoot the problem, follow the steps below:

  • First, check that your Chromebook supports your wireless headphones.
  • Turn off the Bluetooth earphones and on again.
  • Turn off your Chromebook and on again.

You should be having a connection by now.

What are the advantages of Bluetooth earphones?

The following are some of the reasons why you should consider investing in wireless headphones:

  • Wireless connectivity

Bluetooth headphones give you the ability to be cord-free and cord-free for ultimate mobility. You don’t have to be afraid of having cables caught up on something, ripping the ear buds from your ears, or pulling them from your pocket and finding jumbled wires. What you get is zero fuss, and no hassle of unwinding the knots they made in your pocket. If you are a person who runs or works out to music, then wireless earphones are all you need.

  • Sound quality

With wireless headphones, you do not lose your sound quality with ripped-off cables. Many of the wireless headphones available on the market come with bass-boosting technology and are designed to isolate noise. With a pair of these, you get to feel the beat as you listen to your favourite music. Sound quality may have been an issue when wireless headphones first appeared on the market. Not anymore. Today, you get the same sound quality with wireless headphones as with wired ones.

  • Keeps you on the move

It doesn’t matter what activity you are engaged in. whether you are at home doing chores or on the move, you don’t have to hold your phone. This leaves your hands free to do other tasks you may have. This freedom provided by Bluetooth headphones can make even the simplest task easier. If you receive a call while listening to music, you can just touch a button to receive the call. To end the call and turn on your music, you only need to push the button again. Yet, the functionality of the Bluetooth earphones does not end there. Take driving, for example – while it is hard and illegal to drive a vehicle with your phone in hand, with Bluetooth earphones you can still take your call while still driving.

  • Stylish

Bluetooth earphones are sophisticated and stylish. Most of them have a sporty design since they are made to stay firmly in place when you are busy working out or running for long distances. Even casual users get to enjoy the sleek design of most wireless headphones on the market.

  • Affordability

The fact that these devices are wireless doesn’t mean that they should be expensive. Most of the headphones cost less than $70, and may even come with a Bluetooth transmitter just in case your phone isn’t Bluetooth enabled.

  • Multi-functionality

Wireless headphones work with more than just mobile phones and MP3 players. As technology advances, devices such as computers and TVs are being manufactured with Bluetooth abilities. With Bluetooth enabled TVs, pairing with your wireless headphones allows you to listen to your favourite shows without bothering other people in the house. If you have music saved on your computer, you can pair it with your Bluetooth headphones so that you can move around the house without missing a beat.

So, why not go get yourself a pair of Bluetooth earphones?