I love it how a few days after the Consumer Electronics Show 2012 in Las Vegas ended, where people lustily obsessed over 55-inch wafer-thin screen TVs, Apple has got people talking arguing about education reform.
Two years after launch, Apple has now unwittingly made the use of iPads in the classroom the topic of discourse and mild controversy. Finally.
Apple is releasing a new User Guide for the iPad running the soon-to-be-released iOS 4.3, which is set to release on March 11 like the iPad 2.
The guide looks like it will cover all the basics of using the iPad – including topics like email setup, using Safari to browse the web, using the App Store, syncing with a PC, and so on.
It’s a free eBook, and is available for ‘pre-order’ right now in the iBookstore. It adds the book to your library, and presumably will download it once iOS 4.3 is released on March 11th.
This week the iBookstore has added over 15,000 new titles, from Random House – including bestsellers by Stieg Larsson, John Grisham, Danielle Steel, Bill Bryson, and more.
Random House is the latest major publisher to bring their content to iBooks. It’s good to see the iBookstore content expanding, as I’m finding I use the store more and more lately.
This week Apple is promoting some strong new content for young readers in its iBookstore on the iPad and iOS devices – Children’s Picture Books. Here’s the elevator pitch for the new content, via Apple’s promo email on this:
For young readers, pictures and words are equally important. Now, with the latest version of the iBooks app, you can enjoy your favorite children’s picture books in gorgeous, full-color, two-page display on your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch.
Download iBooks 1.2 and browse our collection of newly added picture books, from Ian Falconer’s Olivia and Jane O’Connor’s Fancy Nancy to Nancy Tillman’s heartwarming classic, On the Night You Were Born.
Mike Cane is a real books guy. Books are his thing, as he says. He’s got two very good posts up at his iPad Test site offering his thoughts on the iPad’s iBookstore, after getting a recent sneak peek at it, and highlighting some unexpected free titles in the fledgling store.
He’s got lots of good insights and screenshots, covering everything from pricing levels (which he points out may well not reflect what we’ll see when the store opens) to the rather clunky sorting options offered in the Free Books section.
As pre-orders for the iPad went live yesterday, Apple also revealed a lot more information about the ‘magical, revolutionary’ device, from more tech specs to more details about the not quite built-in (but available free in the App Store) iBooks app.
iBooks will double as an ebook reader app and bookstore for acquiring ebooks. One of the most notable new bits of detail on iBooks is that it will let you add ePub titles not acquired via its own store as well:
The iBooks app uses the ePub format — the most popular open book format in the world. That makes it easy for publishers to create iBooks versions of your favorite reads. And you can add free ePub titles to iTunes and sync them to the iBooks app on your iPad.