iBooks 3.0 brings iCloud sync, vertical scrolling, and more

Just as promised during today's iPad mini event, Apple has released the new version of iBooks with better iCloud integration, enhanced sharing options, continuous scrolling, and more.

With iBooks 3.0, now you can see all your iBookstore purchases in iCloud in a new Collection called Purchased Books. Another great new feature of iBooks is the new Scroll theme; it allows you to scroll vertically through your books as you read.

iBooks 3.0 also allows you receive free updates to your purchased books including new chapters and corrections and the ability to look up definitions for words in German, Spanish, French, Japanese and Simplified Chinese. For the social types, you can also share quotes or thoughts about your books with friends on Facebook, Twitter, Messages, or Mail.

So what do you think of the new iBooks? My favorite new feature is vertical scrolling. What about you?

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Leanna Lofte

App and Photography Editor at iMore. Mother, wife, and math instructor. Follow her on Twitter @llofte and send her apps to consider for review at iosapps@imore.com

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There are 10 comments. Add yours.

iSRS says:

My purchased books collection is empty. Anyone else?

Rowanova says:

I also like the vertical scroll feature, and having it also available on iCloud is very nice as well.

mrsrobinson04#IM says:

Vertical scrolling is a nice touch, even though I prefer the book style. I REALLY miss the old highlighting style, especially for changing color, more steps now is kind of a pain.

dshanah says:

Epub 3.0 support would have been really nice. Vertical scrolling is cute, but hardly ground-breaking. Might use it occasionally.

I also hate that with the new themes settings changing background colours takes extra taps, I use it all the time to switch from night to sepia and back again.

FLskydiver says:

This --

And what I've added below. Once again, Kindle App keeps it simple. One tap on the font size adjuster in the menu bar, and you get one (additional) tap access to font changes, font-size changes, screen brightness changes, and all three themes available in iBooks. Why iBooks has a giant themes bar when they could easily replace it with buttons for the only three themes they offer makes no sense.

I thought Apple were the guys who were supposed to be masters of common-sense UI design?

FLskydiver says:

Is it me, or did looking up words in the dictionary and highlighting text become more difficult along the way?

On the Kindle App, I just have to tap a word and the definition comes up immediately; as well as the options to highlight it, note it, share it, or look it up on google or wikipedia -- all just one more tap away.

On iBooks, one tap gets me NO definition -- just the option to tap again for the definition, or to copy, or to highlight it. Just to search a term on wikipedia, I have to tap the word and then tap THREE MORE times with all the menus and sub-menus. Why??

Plus highlighting is so much easier on the Kindle App -- if you are highlighting more than one word (as you usually are), just tap and drag your selection. Instant highlight! No tapping, selecting highlight, and then having to drag both the start and end selectors to the proper places. iBooks is just so damn tedious. Thank goodness for Calibre.

If any of these features are improved upon in the new iBooks, please let us know.

FLskydiver says:

P.S. While I'm sure continuous scroll will be welcomed by some, it also seems a ridiculously tiresome way to read a long book to me. Page turns just require so much less effort; and it is nearly impossible to lose your place as it can be when you scroll some random amount and and now don't know how high on the page your eyes should be.

Web pages scroll; because they load faster that way, and make layout simpler because every user's browser window is different in both width and height; but they usually don't span more than a few page heights in length. When they do, then good site UI design dictates the author break the content into multiple pages. I can't even imagine scrolling through a book with hundreds or thousands of pages ad infinitum, without even a scroll wheel to make the job easier.

Why would this even be needed on devices with screens of so high a resolution that you can fit so much text on one page you don't need to even turn the page any more often (or even as often as) you do with a real book? Perhaps if your device only showed a few lines at a time; but this I just don't see an attraction to.

Does the new feature at least have some sort of auto-scroll mechanism? Adjustable to your reading speed and with the easy ability to pause?

mfaircloth says:

I am not sure about that. What I want to know is, is the scrolling madatory? I like the pages fliping or turning like a real book.

flyersfan76 says:

So if I purchase a book on my iTunes account how will it transfer to my iCloud account?

My wife and I share iTunes. We each have different iCloud accounts since we are not sharing contacts, etc. Boy if there was a way that we could have the same iCloud account it would be so much easier.