Major Textbook Publishers Sign with ScrollMotion to get on iPad

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that publishers, McGraw-Hill Cos, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt K-12, Pearson Education, and Kaplan Inc., have signed with ScrollMotion to adapt their textbooks for Apple's new iPad tablet.

Though Apple didn't outline its strategy to target the educational sector with its iPad last week, people familiar with Apple's thinking have said that the iPad's use in schools was one of the focal points of discussions in developing the product. In its exploration of electronic book technology, it thought particularly about how it could re-invent textbooks, these people said. Apple declined to comment on the role of textbooks on the iPad. Apple has an edge in the educational sector becauseits Macintosh computers have always enjoyed a strong following in the academic sphere, and it already offers educational audio and video content through its iTunes U service.

ScrollMotion is signed to provide video playback, text highlighting, lecture recording, note taking, text search, and interactive quizzing.

If the original iPod was 10,000 songs in your pocket, is the iPad poised to but 10,000+ book in your lap, and is that ultimately the "killer app"?

[Wall Street Journal via Macrumors]

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

Major Textbook Publishers Sign with ScrollMotion to get on iPad


This is a very cool idea! I wouldve given a lot up for not having to carry around massive text books in my bag all year. And my book bags would thank me. But if they where also available for ipad, I would still prefer the real text over a digital textbook for on reason and one reason only, resale. Lol.
Actually, I wouldn't want to have an ipad that would have a chance on dying on me during my lecture and practical classes. But it's a very good idea. I would definatley jump if I got a 2-for-1 deal on a text/iBook combo. That would be perfect.
Let's see how soon that model could be adapted. I'd also just settle for supplimental material on an ipad as well, but as of now, the Internet is just as good of a "supplimental" material as any other. Lol.

Honestly, if they can get all the text books on this thing; as a college student this would be absolutely ideal!

how much will the textbook cost? It's gonna have to compete with and amazon for buying used textbooks! Majority of students gonna buy used books.

I predicted this in another post, and this move alone will push the iPad into a space where netbooks can't go, and I can pretty much guarantee that the book prices will beat used book prices...

@Nae: Amazon prices will go up. Some publishers have pulled their books from Amazon because they find the $9.99 max price too restrictive. The big name publishers want more money for their work. With amazon the only real option, they begrudgingly sold their work for low prices. With apple allowing higher prices, publishers feel more comfortable going with Apple instead of Amazon. Amazon is said to be in talks to allow higher prices.
This is good. Especially for educational textbooks, it can cost a lot of money to write it. Especially when the author has to travel to get material. Those kinds of books should cost more money because it costs more to produce them. So I can understand the publishers wanting to pull their work from Amazon and go where they can sell the books for what they think it's worth instead of a third party lime Amazon dictating the price.

When u update to 3.1.3 look at the battery percentage remember it, then reset ur iPhone and when it turns back on look at the 1st intial lockscreen the battery percentage will be 8% lower then after a sec it will jump back 8 % to wut it should really be... Very very strange I thought apple was supposed to fix the issue not make it worse.... DO NOT UPGRADE PLEASE STICK WITH 3.1.2 FAR LESS BUGGY....

I'm skeptical about the revolution in textbooks predicted with the iPad, mostly because of two reasons. First, people have been predicting it for a while now, but it's not that simple. Second, the driving force behind it is not that it will be easier for students, but because textbook publishers want to do away with the used textbook market. The used market makes it necessary to release new editions with the hope that professors will feel obligated to use it. Open source textbooks are much more likely to actually revolutionize textbooks than e-books.

It's not going to work well. Even if they got all the publishers lined up, i just could not imagine using this device (or similar) in college.
You want textbooks you can open up in front of you (often many at once), throw in bookmarks, write in them, etc. You don't want to baby them as you would an expensive device.
If taken as an entertainment device, the iPad will do great. It's when they try to apply it to things that aren't practical is when it will fail.

This just seems like the logical step to take. Having one device to hold all of your textbooks; while integrating them with the web, lectures, notes, teacher assignments, and self-quizzes. I’m sure they will even have a way to keep the versions updated and permit students to incorporate highlighting ability. Not to mention the green impact (goodbye school book stores & say hi to Blockbuster for me). I’m sure high schools will also adapt this type of technology, as state school boards continue to search for way to reduce spending and this is an easy way to transfer the cost of proving text books directly to those that need them (and silence the parents crying about heavy book-bags).

My question is this: if I can't multitask to take notes on the side, how robust (or are they even included, cause Steve didn't mention this) is the in-app note taking for iBooks?

"how much will the textbook cost? It’s gonna have to compete with and amazon for buying used textbooks! Majority of students gonna buy used books."
Don't you think the reduction in printing and paper costs will automatically make the books "halfoff"?

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA… you're joking, right? This is Big Publishing we're talking about.
I don't know if this is the norm, but "Weird Al" Yankovic gets actually LESS if you buy one of his albums on iTunes compared to the same price in a retail store. And there's no overhead.

So if inflation rises to 10%/year and you're holding a 10 year bond at 3%, you can hold on for 10 years and get your yield at maturity. Which, after adjustment for inflation, means you've lost a large part of your investment. When rates start to surge, there's a good chance it will be fast, and you're not going to be able to get out of these long term vehicles without a lot of pain.