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Apple's e-textbooks cost $14.99 or less, major publishers already on board

post #1 of 41
Thread Starter 
Digital textbooks available for iBooks 2 on iPad will come at a significant discount over regular paper-based books, with prices at $14.99 or less from major publishers like McGraw Hill and Pearson.

Titles announced at Thursday's media event from Pearson include Algebra I, Biology, Environmental Science, Geometry. These titles are used by more than 4 million high school students.

McGraw Hill is also on board, Apple's Phil Schiller revealed. They are offering Algebra I, Biology, Chemistry, Geometry and Physics titles as of today on the iBookstore with iBooks 2.

In addition, DK Publishing launched four books on Thursday: "Dinosaurs and Prehistoric Life," Natural History Insects," "Natural History Animals," and "My First ABCs" for young children.

Also on the iBookstore is "Life on Earth" from the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation, with the first two chapters available as a free download. Future chapters will be made available as they are completed at "a very aggressive price."




A video accompanying Thursday's announcement noted that children today use largely the same tools for learning that were available in 1950. With iBooks 2 and the new iBooks Author, Apple hopes to change that by making dynamic and inexpensive digital textbooks for the iPad.
post #2 of 41
There seems to be several mentions of high school textbooks. I thought high school students did not normally purchase textbooks, rather the school district provided them. Has this changed ?
post #3 of 41
I can see Apple having an 8GB iPad 2 — in a couple months —*that cost $349 and is only available to the Education Store like their low end iMac.

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post #4 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

I can see Apple having an 8GB iPad 2

The very existence of even ONE of these textbooks proves this wrong.

That Life On Earth book? I'm downloading it. They say it's two chapters for free right now, right?

It's a gigabyte.

No way does an 8GB iPad make ANY sense.

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post #5 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

The very existence of even ONE of these textbooks proves this wrong.

That Life On Earth book? I'm downloading it. They say it's two chapters for free right now, right?

It's a gigabyte.

No way does an 8GB iPad make ANY sense.

Ouch! 8GB would be anemic for a semester's course load, but so would 16GB, with 2 chapters at 1GB.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #6 of 41
The textbook industry is the most profitable section in the book publishing industry. With textbooks often costing 100+ dollars each, publishers make fat profits from them.

If publishers stand to lose their profits from selling textbooks cheaply, then they will not go along with Apple.

After all, textbooks on Amazon in eBook form for the Kindle are STILL EXPENSIVE - often costing the same as the physical textbooks themselves.
post #7 of 41
Currently, education is going downhill in the U.S.

California Schools, for example, no longer teach handwriting! They only teach students to write their signature.

How stupid. How shocking.

It is through the lost of traditional teaching methods - which are still taught in other higher achieving countries which means every other country except the U.S.A. - that our students fail.
post #8 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameskatt2 View Post

If publishers stand to lose their profits from selling textbooks cheaply, then they will not go along with Apple.

Looks like they've gone along already.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jameskatt2 View Post

California Schools, for example, no longer teach handwriting! They only teach students to write their signature.

Wait, handwriting at all or just cursive? Because a lot of places are (stupidly) phasing out cursive.

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Originally posted by Marvin

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post #9 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

That Life On Earth book? I'm downloading it. They say it's two chapters for free right now, right?
It's a gigabyte.
No way does an 8GB iPad make ANY sense.

Perhaps Apple will go the other way... have a high RAM version (for education that doesn't have a camera to minimize the offensive photos from kids). Didn't Apple just buy a RAM maker? (I can't find the article in AI).
post #10 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Looks like they've gone along already.



Wait, handwriting at all or just cursive? Because a lot of places are (stupidly) phasing out cursive.

Literally the only time I've ever written cursive was when I had to learn it in school in 3rd grade.
post #11 of 41
i got excited when i saw textbooks for $15 or less... then got mad when they are only for K-12... There needs to be something done about college textbooks.. $200+ for some college textbooks is a global scam.. i had a professor who WROTE a textbook himself... sold through one of the big companies for $127 and he got only $2-3 for every textbook sold..... WHERE IS THE $$ GOING?
post #12 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameskatt2 View Post

If publishers stand to lose their profits from selling textbooks cheaply, then they will not go along with Apple.

What are you talking about?

The three biggest publishers, responsible for 90% of all sales have already partnered with Apple.
post #13 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by H2P View Post

Perhaps Apple will go the other way... have a high RAM version (for education that doesn't have a camera to minimize the offensive photos from kids). Didn't Apple just buy a RAM maker? (I can't find the article in AI).

Apple purchased a Ram Designing/Engineering company, the company they purchased is fabless.
post #14 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by H2P View Post

Perhaps Apple will go the other way... have a high RAM version (for education that doesn't have a camera to minimize the offensive photos from kids). Didn't Apple just buy a RAM maker? (I can't find the article in AI).

You mean NAND. RAM is memory. NAND is hard drive space.

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post #15 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameskatt2 View Post

The textbook industry is the most profitable section in the book publishing industry. With textbooks often costing 100+ dollars each, publishers make fat profits from them.

If publishers stand to lose their profits from selling textbooks cheaply, then they will not go along with Apple.

As others have said, it sounds like the publishers are already going along with this.

Since we're talking high school books and not college, I have a feeling the publishers are really not making much off of those book sales and I can understand why.

I'm not sure how your school was, but my school would reuse the same books until they fell apart. Obviously that's more than one year. So at $15 a piece, say the book was $100, that would be 6 years to recoup the lower cost, and I can see most schools keeping the books more than six years.

Something makes this more appealing than selling the hardcover versions, and I think it's the fact that they would make money per student, per year, and not just when the schools decide their current books are too destroyed to keep using and decide to buy more.
post #16 of 41
I've been trying to download the physics textbook for some time now. It's verrrry slow! I would imagine that Apple's store is being bombarded right now, as so often happens when they do something new.

As the the post about students having to buy these books, yes, they can do that, but I believe that something was mentioned about a voucher that students could get that would allow them to download the book.

There must be some way to make this cheaper for school systems. From my own experience, I can say that schools do pay a lot for these texts, and need to replace a fair number of them every year because of destruction and loss. You lose or destroy their book, and you pay for it. But they can keep the books for years, on average. Still, costs are high, and a lot of storage room is needed, room that schools would rather use for classrooms.

But if each book here is bought, new, every year, costs will also be high. I'm wondering if schools will get discounts for the number of seats they are buying for. Nothing was mentioned about that.
post #17 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Ouch! 8GB would be anemic for a semester's course load, but so would 16GB, with 2 chapters at 1GB.

Solution: Multiple iPads for each person, like on Star Trek: The Next Generation.
post #18 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

You mean NAND. RAM is memory. NAND is hard drive space.

No, NAND is a type of logic gate. NAND flash is a type of flash storage, but there are plenty of others. I've never heard anyone refer to flash storage as simply "NAND". That'd be even more stupid than people who call bluetooth headsets "bluetooths."
post #19 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by c-ray View Post

There seems to be several mentions of high school textbooks. I thought high school students did not normally purchase textbooks, rather the school district provided them. Has this changed ?

For public schools it is tax money used by the schools to buy them and loan them to the kids. Private schools often make the parents buy them (mine certainly did).

These books could end up the same way.

Also note the 'high school' with the pricing as well. You can bet that collegiate texts will adopt the form but not the pricing. I suspect they will be in the $50-75 range. Which is still a bargain.

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post #20 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by jglonek View Post

I'm not sure how your school was, but my school would reuse the same books until they fell apart. Obviously that's more than one year. So at $15 a piece, say the book was $100, that would be 6 years to recoup the lower cost, and I can see most schools keeping the books more than six years.

That's pretty much every school that is funded with tax money. Textbook changes are voted on, even just a new edition and they will use them until a copy falls apart and then try to keep using it another year with bandaids wrapped around it.

The real money for these companies is collegiate textbooks where they can pull stunts like usage contracts that force the teachers to adopt any new edition of the text (which the publishers then do every 2-3 years), put half the material in supplements etc. Laws against building course packs culled from various sources without paying use fees (which they will never give if it is anything out of a textbook) help that lock in as well.

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post #21 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by joelsalt View Post

Literally the only time I've ever written cursive was when I had to learn it in school in 3rd grade.

Don't take notes much, eh?
post #22 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by H2P View Post

Don't take notes much, eh?

I was told in college that printing was faster than cursive for taking notes. It seems to me that at full speed, sloppy printing is more readable than sloppy cursive. If we are going for all out speed we probably should be teaching shorthand instead of cursive. While I lament the passing of teaching cursive writing, it is probably a dead art. Perhaps thats the, solution teach cursive handwriting in art class.

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post #23 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameskatt2 View Post

Currently, education is going downhill in the U.S.

California Schools, for example, no longer teach handwriting! They only teach students to write their signature.

How stupid. How shocking.

It is through the lost of traditional teaching methods - which are still taught in other higher achieving countries which means every other country except the U.S.A. - that our students fail.

i use a pen like once a month these days
post #24 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haggar View Post

Solution: Multiple iPads for each person, like on Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Running the numbers with an average of 500MB per chapter with a low 10 chapters per book and excluding any appendices for a load of an estimated 4 subjects per semester that would use comprehensive textbooks I get: 4 x 10 x 0.5GB = 20GB. I think that could easily be double that, especially when digital distribution allows for the pushed of more data, not less, to the reader. Maybe 32GB might not be enough.

I agree with the poster that suggested a camera-free ipad for education.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #25 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gustav View Post

No, NAND is a type of logic gate. NAND flash is a type of flash storage, but there are plenty of others. I've never heard anyone refer to flash storage as simply "NAND". That'd be even more stupid than people who call bluetooth headsets "bluetooths."

Yes, yes. Pseudosemantics.

I use "NAND" or "NAND chips" to set chip-only storage apart from HDD or SSD methods. Actually, that's the first time I've used just NAND, so if it's not supposed to be used like that, I'll certainly append 'chips' in the future.

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post #26 of 41
State Boards are now super tempted now to buy iPads versus text books - long run cost savings, less distribution issues, less paper, etc. Now think of your local school on the TV and radio announcing how the class of XX will ALL have iPads versus textbooks. Yippee right?


Problem - bullies don't steal textbooks. But bullies, thieves, meth-heads, thugs, etc WILL steal iPads. Now picture your kids walking home from school with a $500 iPad on their backs. Maybe NOT in your neighborhood... but think of the poor kid who has to walk through the ghetto to get home.

Hey, not downing Apple but... this education push should be at college level. Not Elementary to High School.

Not everyone lives in Atherton, California!
post #27 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

What are you talking about?

The three biggest publishers, responsible for 90% of all sales have already partnered with Apple.

Could you please read the thread before posting? Thanks!
post #28 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuxoM3 View Post

State Boards are now super tempted now to buy iPads versus text books - long run cost savings, less distribution issues, less paper, etc. Now think of your local school on the TV and radio announcing how the class of XX will ALL have iPads versus textbooks. Yippee right?


Problem - bullies don't steal textbooks. But bullies, thieves, meth-heads, thugs, etc WILL steal iPads. Now picture your kids walking home from school with a $500 iPad on their backs. Maybe NOT in your neighborhood... but think of the poor kid who has to walk through the ghetto to get home.

Hey, not downing Apple but... this education push should be at college level. Not Elementary to High School.

Not everyone lives in Atherton, California!

I can't imagine too many districts letting school owned iPads leaving school grounds anyways...
post #29 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gustav View Post

That'd be even more stupid than people who call bluetooth headsets "bluetooths."

Or the interwebs¡
post #30 of 41
say a chemistry teacher has 100 students per year at $100 per book. That's $10,000 but the book is used for years.

100 students per year at $15 per student is $1500 per year.

but that $10,000 is only revenue. you still have to pay 30% or so to your sales team for closing the deal, adobe licenses and support and other costs.

for apple you need a Mac and free software they provide
post #31 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gustav View Post

No, NAND is a type of logic gate. NAND flash is a type of flash storage, but there are plenty of others. I've never heard anyone refer to flash storage as simply "NAND". That'd be even more stupid than people who call bluetooth headsets "bluetooths."

It's descriptive without obfuscating to what is being referred.

Also, calling NAND flash memory RAM is axiomatically wrong. That said, it's only a problem if it makes the meaning ambiguous or we getting pedantically technical for acedemic reasons. There are many types of RAM we categorize as ROM and vice versa. It's a hold over from how we associate their utility within a computer... and that's okay.

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #32 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuxoM3 View Post

State Boards are now super tempted now to buy iPads versus text books - long run cost savings, less distribution issues, less paper, etc. Now think of your local school on the TV and radio announcing how the class of XX will ALL have iPads versus textbooks. Yippee right?


Problem - bullies don't steal textbooks. But bullies, thieves, meth-heads, thugs, etc WILL steal iPads. Now picture your kids walking home from school with a $500 iPad on their backs. Maybe NOT in your neighborhood... but think of the poor kid who has to walk through the ghetto to get home.

Hey, not downing Apple but... this education push should be at college level. Not Elementary to High School.

Not everyone lives in Atherton, California!

by the time this gets to the poor schools ipads will be so cheap that everyone will have one. i see all kinds of poor looking people in NYC with iphones. even my 4S was essentially free
post #33 of 41
most schools have computer, either PC or MAC. ipad can replace them completely. so having ipads or tablet is not an issue of economics, nor is it an issue of poor or rich.

if a given ipad/tablet is stolen, apple/tablet vendors can remotely lock it up, so thieves would not able to use it.

for my 8th grader, i spent $400 for books and relevant materials for one year. i can bite the bill, but the problem is that there is no way for a 13 yo to carry all of those books with him. even 2 subjects, the school bags are full already and it is very heavy. yes, school provides books in library or even at class, but when everyone wants to have one only the first batch of students can be sure to have it.

i don't think ipad will be 100% across all schools. if a school decides to use HP pad, then book suppliers can provide online book service to this particular school. this relationship is decided not by apple but school district. apple is just giving a push into this direction which will be happening regardless.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LuxoM3 View Post

State Boards are now super tempted now to buy iPads versus text books - long run cost savings, less distribution issues, less paper, etc. Now think of your local school on the TV and radio announcing how the class of XX will ALL have iPads versus textbooks. Yippee right?


Problem - bullies don't steal textbooks. But bullies, thieves, meth-heads, thugs, etc WILL steal iPads. Now picture your kids walking home from school with a $500 iPad on their backs. Maybe NOT in your neighborhood... but think of the poor kid who has to walk through the ghetto to get home.

Hey, not downing Apple but... this education push should be at college level. Not Elementary to High School.

Not everyone lives in Atherton, California!
post #34 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Ouch! 8GB would be anemic for a semester's course load, but so would 16GB, with 2 chapters at 1GB.

They sync with iTunes on your Mac, so you can have them sync up over the network as you browse through them.
post #35 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Ouch! 8GB would be anemic for a semester's course load, but so would 16GB, with 2 chapters at 1GB.

I foresee larger drives not smaller. But yes, there will be a low end deal for students

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post #36 of 41
A company called Inkling has been producing interactive textbooks for iPad for some time now... wonder if this is competition for them...
post #37 of 41
What I'm curious is why any school board would choose Apple? If I were an administrator, why would I not choose $200 Kindle Fires (or some other eReader/tablet) and sign deals with the book publishers for pretty close to the same prices.

Even if the publishers were forced to charge $20 per book instead of $15 because of some special Apple clause, the total cost of ownership over 4 years of high school would still be lower than the iBooks 2/iPad combination. Maybe, I'm missing something, but I'm failing what's solely compelling to school admins about going with $500 iPads. For schools to adopt this, surely the price of the hardware itself has to come down a little.

I do wish Apple had gone after college texts. That's where they really could have been disruptive. Let's face it, nobody should really be paying more than $15-$20 for high school textbooks anyway. That's all they are really worth. A really good teacher could probably teach a lot of high school courses, without a textbook, and by putting up his/her own homework questions.
post #38 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jetz View Post

What I'm curious is why any school board would choose Apple? If I were an administrator, why would I not choose $200 Kindle Fires (or some other eReader/tablet) and sign deals with the book publishers for pretty close to the same prices.

Even if the publishers were forced to charge $20 per book instead of $15 because of some special Apple clause, the total cost of ownership over 4 years of high school would still be lower than the iBooks 2/iPad combination. Maybe, I'm missing something, but I'm failing what's solely compelling to school admins about going with $500 iPads. For schools to adopt this, surely the price of the hardware itself has to come down a little.

I do wish Apple had gone after college texts. That's where they really could have been disruptive. Let's face it, nobody should really be paying more than $15-$20 for high school textbooks anyway. That's all they are really worth. A really good teacher could probably teach a lot of high school courses, without a textbook, and by putting up his/her own homework questions.

Kindle Fires are not the same experience as an iPad. It's not some mythical Apple tax it's less than half the display area. A textbook page is about the dimension of the iPad's screen. You can't even do the same pinch and zoom maneuvers on the Fire because it only has dual-input touch.

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #39 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave K. View Post

I can't imagine too many districts letting school owned iPads leaving school grounds anyways...

Remember homework? You can't do your homework if you can't take your book home...
post #40 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave K. View Post

I can't imagine too many districts letting school owned iPads leaving school grounds anyways...

Really? My daughter's school gives out HP tablets (the old clunky Windows XP type) and the students can take them home when needed.


On a different subject, the following article is interesting:
http://www.businesswire.com/news/hom...20-Percent-HMH

So much for the "it's all about the teacher, not the books" argument.
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Gatorguy 5/31/13
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