Qualcomm Buys Cloud-based Classroom Offering

EmpoweredU is a cloud-based learning infrastructure that allows students and instructors to better engage with each other due to the features and functionality built into the platform. EmpoweredU focuses on being able to deliver learning content to mobile devices. The EmpoweredU website mentions that the service can engage students at anytime, anywhere from any device. The online learning platform was built in 2011 by a group of self described education and mobile cloud entrepreneurs. The innovative learning platform gives instructors the ability to measure engagement as well as methods to increase engagement. These metrics can be used to custom tailor the class to meet the individual needs of the students attending.

EmpoweredU first announced that Qualcomm Technologies, which is division of Qualcomm Inc., has purchased the online learning platform for an undisclosed amount. Qualcomm plans on adding EmpoweredU into its fold of educational offerings. Steve Sprigg is the Senior VP at Qualcomm Technogies. Sprigg describes Qualcomm’s educational endeavors by saying, “From the Company’s long involvement in the education space, including nearly 40 education projects funded by the Qualcomm Wireless Reach initiative since 2007 , we’ve learned that providing students with 24/7 access to their peers, teachers and learning materials can dramatically improve learning outcomes.” Sprigg goes on to say, “However, the digital divide continues to widen as there has not yet been a viable solution to address the gaps for those students without 24/7 access.”

Qualcomm is presenting this new cloud based learning suite as a new division within the company.  The acquisition has resulted in the birth of a new division that was aptly named Qualcomm Education. Qualcomm Education’s offerings will feature the EmpoweredU platform.  Universities such as UCLA have already implemented the EmpoweredU platform. Qualcomm will go into competition against other solutions that compete in this market space such as BlackBoard which is being used by around 50% of the total market.