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Apple announces iBooks 2, now with textbooks

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Apple iBooks 2As part of its education announcement today Apple announced an update to iBooks which will bring interactive textbooks to the platform.

Apple calls textbooks in iBooks 2 a “new textbook experience” which allows students to directly interact with their textbooks. As with any books in the iBookstore, textbooks will be able to use videos, photos, or interactive elements to keep students interested. To make it even better, textbooks can have their own layouts which means you won’t have to see the extra graphics on the side that Apple puts on standard books (assuming you’re not using fullscreen mode).

The new update also has updated note-taking features. You’ll be able to highlight text and create nots as easily as you could in the first version of iBooks. Now the big new feature is the ability to see all your notes at once and to instantly create flashcards with them, which can be an incredibly useful study tool.

To get these textbooks Apple is partnering with Pearson, McGraw Hill, and Houghton Miller to get textbooks in iBooks. Combined the companies create 90 percent of all textbooks. Apple is starting with high school textbooks first, with the textbooks costing a maximum of $14.99, much much lower than the average price of the hardcover editions.

It all seems like a great idea, but it’d be much nicer if Apple could have focused more on college students for textbooks. That’s where it’s more likely that students will even have an option of getting their own textbooks.

Read [The Verge]

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