That was quick. About three days after Google released its API for Google+ Hangouts the German startup Conceptboard released an extension that implements the companies whiteboard product into Hangouts.
Though the Sketchpad that comes with the new extras might be working OK for a lot of sessions, the Conceptboard extension adds all the features that you would expect from a decent virtual classroom or collaboration tool including freehand scribble, drawing tools, file import, note taking, tasks, screen shots as well as screen sharing.
Another interesting feature is that users don’t need to have Google+ or the Chrome browser extension to take part in a meeting / lesson. They can also join directly via the Conceptboard website.
This reminds me of a post that Kirsten wrote in May 2010, asking if Google Apps have the potential to become building blocks for startups to create education services upon. Google+ Hangouts and its API could become a huge competitor for virtual classrooms and management systems especially if one adds services like calendar and payments.