U-M planning to retire BlueJeans videoconferencing May 1


The University of Michigan will retire the BlueJeans videoconferencing platform across all of its campuses by May, as BlueJeans has experienced a significant falloff in use that corresponds with growth of the Zoom platform.

Information and Technology Services deployed Zoom and Zoom for Health videoconferencing across the university last spring to support the move to remote teaching, learning and work due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Since then, its use has grown and BlueJeans use has fallen significantly.

That shift in usage, and out of consideration for financial austerity measures, has prompted the university to retire BlueJeans effective May 1, 2021. Google Meet remains available for campus videoconferencing needs at no additional cost.

“ITS is committed to making this transition as smooth as possible and to minimizing any disruptions to campus,” said Andy Palms, executive director of infrastructure for ITS. “The project team leading the retirement effort has developed a comprehensive communications and engagement plan to help faculty, staff and students reduce BlueJeans usage and prepare for its retirement.”

Palms said ITS is reaching out directly to active users of BlueJeans and is working closely with key stakeholders, unit staff, and IT leadership across all campuses — Ann Arbor, Dearborn, Flint and Michigan Medicine — to identify areas of concern and provide direct support where needed.

Technical staff members also are exploring ways to replace BlueJeans with Zoom in applications where integrations exist, such as Canvas, the Faculty Office Hours tool and campus videoconferencing systems.

As part of that effort, access to BlueJeans in Canvas will end Jan. 12, 2021. However, BlueJeans Meetings will remain available as a standalone videoconferencing platform through April 30, 2021.

“We ask that faculty, students and staff move to Zoom or Google Meet for all videoconference meetings they host,” Palms said. “Our project website contains resources and detailed information, including how to transition to Zoom in Canvas. We also have highly trained IT staff who are available to work with faculty directly.”


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