Thursday, August 26, 2010

Electronic text books

Monterey College of Law is distributing Apple iPads to all students enrolled in a supplemental curriculum program that helps them prepare for the state's bar exam.

The program is motivated by the desire to save time for busy night students who typically work full time and have families, not cost. However, technology improvement coupled with new business models will eventually drive the cost of electronic textbooks well below that of printed textbooks, as shown in this cost breakdown.

Electronic book sales have already passed hard cover sales at Amazon, and the cost of a Kindle reader is down to $139.

In addition to cost and time savings, electronic textbooks will have new features including capability for social or collaborative reading. It is too soon to know what those features will be or how they will work, but check the Institute of the Future of the Book if you are curious about the possibilities.

Would you prefer electronic to printed textbooks?