iphone textbooks

Quick link to a WSJ article which informs us that an American e-tectbook company is now offering an iphone app which allows students to access their (rented) textbooks on their phones:

The new applications, free for subscribers to CourseSmart LLC, will let students access their full electronic textbooks, read their digital notes and search for specific words and phrases.

“Nobody is going to use their iPhone to do their homework, but this does provide real mobile learning,” said Frank Lyman, CourseSmart’s executive vice president. “If you’re in a study group and you have a question, you can immediately access your text.”

Of course, it’s not really about reading the text on the phone, but about raising awareness:

“Textbooks are the missing link in the e-reader content base,” said Sarah Rotman Epps, an analyst with Forrester Research, Inc. “The problem so far is that college students haven’t really been interested in reading on their laptops. The iPhone will help create excitement and generate awareness of e-textbooks.”

(via Macrumors)


1 comment so far

  1. J. Scott on

    I don’t know that the etextbooks will prove to be a viable option for college students, at least not all of us. I think the tangibility of actual textbooks has it’s own value. Being able to write and highlight in the book, being able to skip around the book quickly and skip to the index if necessary are all things that you lose with the etextbooks. And I understand that textbooks can be expensive, and cumbersome to lug around, but there are ways around both of those. To combat the prices I always use the textbook search engine http://www.bigwords.com (which has their own iphone app now btw) And if you don’t want to lug all your books around all day, get there early and find a good parking spot and only carry the book you need for the next class. And one more thing that textbooks are the iphone isn’t – durable! I can imagine a lot of iphones getting broken if they are treated the way a normal textbook gets treated.

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