Apple Launches iBooks 2 for iPad, Interactive Textbooks of the Future

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Textbooks iBooks Author

Textbooks Experience

Education, which is deeply ingrained in Apple‘s DNA, has been given a boost with the announcement of iBooks 2 for iPad. Apple announced this at a special education-specific event in New York City. iBooks 2 for iPad features iBooks textbooks, the textbook of the future which offers dynamic, engaging and interactive content. The days of heavy backpacks, expensive books and dull static content are numbered. Leading education services and publishers including Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, McGraw-Hill and Pearson have landed support, and will deliver educational titles on the iBookstore with prices at $14.99 and below. Apple also unveiled the new iBooks Author, a free downloadable authoring tool which enables anyone with a Mac to create stunning iBooks textbooks.

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There are over 1.5 million iPads already used in education institutions, including over 1,000 one-to-one deployments. With iBooks 2 for iPad, students can now have a more dynamic and interactive way to read and learn, using their favourite iDevice.

Textbooks iBooks Author

The new iBooks 2 app is a free download from the App Store. It supports great rich content including fullscreen books, interactive 3D objects, diagrams/charts, videos and photos. Navigation is fluid and plus points include easy highlighting nad note-taking tools, lesson reviews and study cards. Very efficient and extraordinarily useful.

Textbooks Experience

Apple is generous to make available the iBooks Author app as a free download from the Mac App Store. This will allow anyone with a Mac to create textbooks, cookbooks, history books and more, and get them published on the Apple iBookstore. This will make self-publishing truly possible and without too much hassle. There are Apple-designed templates to choose from and you can add content by simple drag-and-drop. It features Multi-Touch widgets so you can easily add interactive photo galleries, movies, Keynote presentations and 3D objects.

Apple also announced the all-new iTunes U app, which enables students using iPads to have acces to the world’s largest catalog of free educational content, along with 20,000 education apps at their fingertips (including hundreds of thousands of books in the iBookstore). The iTunes U app is available today as a free download from the App Store.

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My take:
I think this is a game-changer. This is the future. While it will take some time and money to truly embrace it in educational institutions, the benefits far outweigh the cons. Engaging, compelling, interactive content will make learning more enjoyable and exciting, and the fact that iPads are lighter and multi-dimensional, beats a static book or class materials any day. Perhaps in 20 years time, the future generation will not even know what a real book will look or feel like.

I think iBooks Author is brilliant. It will make self-publishing easy and painless and publishing it to the iBookstore guarantees at global audience. We will soon see a spike in books and content in the iBookstore as aspiring writers and content providers start creating with iBooks Author. You can distribute your published book for free or as a paid book. All books are published in ePub or Multi Touch Book format.

What do you think about iBooks 2 and iBooks Author?

[spoiler title=”Show Official Press Release”]

Apple Reinvents Textbooks with iBooks 2 for iPad

 NEW YORK—January 19, 2012—Apple® today announced iBooks® 2 for iPad®, featuring iBooks textbooks, an entirely new kind of textbook that’s dynamic, engaging and truly interactive. iBooks textbooks offer iPad users gorgeous, fullscreen textbooks with interactive animations, diagrams, photos, videos, unrivaled navigation and much more. iBooks textbooks can be kept up to date, don’t weigh down a backpack and never have to be returned. Leading education services companies including Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, McGraw-Hill and Pearson will deliver educational titles on the iBookstore? with most priced at $14.99 or less, and with the new iBooks Author, a free authoring tool available today, anyone with a Mac® can create stunning iBooks textbooks. 

“Education is deep in Apple’s DNA and iPad may be our most exciting education product yet. With 1.5 million iPads already in use in education institutions, including over 1,000 one-to-one deployments, iPad is rapidly being adopted by schools across the US and around the world,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “Now with iBooks 2 for iPad, students have a more dynamic, engaging and truly interactive way to read and learn, using the device they already love.”

The new iBooks 2 app is available today as a free download from the App Store™. With support for great new features including gorgeous, fullscreen books, interactive 3D objects, diagrams, videos and photos, the iBooks 2 app will let students learn about the solar system or the physics of a skyscraper with amazing new interactive textbooks that come to life with just a tap or swipe of the finger. With its fast, fluid navigation, easy highlighting and note-taking, searching and definitions, plus lesson reviews and study cards, the new iBooks 2 app lets students study and learn in more efficient and effective ways than ever before. 

iBooks Author is also available today as a free download from the Mac App Store and lets anyone with a Mac create stunning iBooks textbooks, cookbooks, history books, picture books and more, and publish them to Apple’s iBookstore. Authors and publishers of any size can start creating with Apple-designed templates that feature a wide variety of page layouts. iBooks Author lets you add your own text and images by simply dragging and dropping, and with the Multi-Touch™ widgets you can easily add interactive photo galleries, movies, Keynote® presentations and 3D objects. 

Apple today also announced an all-new iTunes® U app giving educators and students everything they need on their iPad, iPhone® and iPod touch® to teach and take entire courses. With the new iTunes U app, students using iPads have access to the world’s largest catalog of free educational content, along with over 20,000 education apps at their fingertips and hundreds of thousands of books in the iBookstore that can be used in their school curriculum, such as novels for English or Social Studies.* The iTunes U app is available today as a free download from the App Store.

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