Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) announced that they had completed the purchase of MinecraftEdu line from Scholastic Corp (NASDAQ:SCHL). MinecraftEdu is a game for educational purposes especially for students from teachers. Microsoft has been a strong advocate for this game to be used for educational purpose. The acquisition closely follows up Microsoft’s acquisition of Swedish-Based Mojang- which is the maker of Minecraft. The acquisition was made for $2.5 billion and was done September 2014.
MineCraftEdu is a version of Minecraft, which is specifically used for educational purpose. Teacher Gaming site had described this software as made by teachers for teachers. Currently, Minecraft accounts for more than 100 million registered players who are spread across 238 countries. It is also one of the best-selling PC games. Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) Google’s Android and Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s iOS have stated that this is one of the highest selling app in their stores.
MinecraftEdu has slowly crept into classrooms, and more than 7,000 classes are using it across 40 countries. This might seem like a significant progress though teachers in most schools have been having a hard time purchasing it. Microsoft stated that their acquisition will make it easier and more streamlined for educators and teachers to get it in their classroom.
Microsoft has plans to build out Minecraft Education Edition. This will be based on MinecraftEdu. They announced that a free trial would be available in the summer. Various questions have a raised following this, but Matt Booty, who is Microsoft’s Vice President, stated that their belief is that they remain as original as the game, and they were only making it possible to use it broadly in an educational setting. The new version of this game is expected to retail at $5 per student on an annual basis.
The company also made it clear that it plans to separate student accounts from their private account. This is mostly for private purposes. Matt also stated that this software would allow children to carry their assignment home and share it with family and friends.
Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is slowly investing heavily in gaming as it sees it as a big money maker especially in the mobile space.