Does the influx of eTextbook apps for the iPad and iPhone signal the death of the paper textbook? This week, Apple announced big changes in the eBook world, with new eTextbook and iTunes U apps, as well as changes to the popular iBooks app – all targeting students in particular. Apple has big visions of sugarplums and an iPad in every backpack.
Using An iPad Means Higher Test Scores?
According to AppleInsider, students scored up to 20% better on math testswhen studying with an eTextbook app. With such impressive results, Apple’s dream appears to be well founded. However, critics claim that the iPad’s high price tag puts the device and subsequent benefits out of reach of many students- especially lower income students who generally need help the most. Many schools are already embracing the iPad in special education and select student groups and seeing wonderful results, but many naysayers claim that Apple’s vision of pitching iPad eTextbooks to high school students is idealistic.
eTextbook iPad App Development Meets the Needs of College Students
Many textbook companies, such as Pearson who outsourced to an iPad app development company, are already catching on to the potential of iPad eTextbooks by creating apps geared toward college students, who are enthusiastic about the added portability, search features, and note taking abilities built into most iPad text book apps. Many universities, like the University of Kentucky, have recognized the potential benefits and high demand for eTextbooks and offer various apps and selections for popular courses. To date, students can choose from the eText version, the print version, or specially packaged combinations of print textbooks bundled with the electronic version for added benefits for many courses.This gives students the freedom to choose which medium works best for them and the lower priced eTexts encourage students to give the newer textbook apps a try without relinquishing the traditional paper and ink versions.
Is Apple’s Pitch Beneficial to the Average iPad App Development Company?
Has Apple missed the visionary mark in pitching its learning apps to high school students instead of college students? Perhaps not, since college students are more likely to own an iOS device. Colleges and universities make renting eTextbooks or purchasing eText versions an attractive deal when purchasing required textbooks, making iPad textbooks an easy choice for college students. The high school population may indeed be the untapped market Apple and iPad app development companies are looking for.
Education apps for the iPad will likely grow in popularity as more and more consumers purchase iPads as educational aids. iPad app developers already provide high-dollar apps to help those with disabilities communicate more effectively, and the market for general education is expanding rapidly.
Students and teachers alike recognize the huge potential that lies within the iPad app store. It seems the Apple price tag is the biggest stumbling block for an education explosion. Could Apple have a special pricing program in store for students? Some universities and private schools are considering bundling the price of an iPad into the cost of tuition due to the overwhelming unique benefits the device and its apps have to offer.
How are you using the iPad for education? Many of these eTextbook apps are in the beta phase and have room for improvement. What has your experience with these apps brought to light? What recommendations do you have for an iPad app development company considering breaking into the eTextbook market from a consumer’s point of view?