The Digital Reader

Charting the eBook Evolution since 2010

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Entries Tagged as 'digital textbooks'


CourseSmart Launches $200 Digital Textbook Rental Bundle

August 21st, 2013 by Nate Hoffelder · digital textbooks, ebook subscription → No Comments

subpack_hero[1]It looks like CourseSmart may have found their solution to the problem of textbook prices.

This digital textbook distributor has just announced CourseSmart Subscription Packs, a new lower priced option for digital textbook rentals.
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Digital Textbook Publisher Boundless in Settlement Talks Over Infringement Lawsuit – Pushes Ahead With New Paid Textbook

August 10th, 2013 by Nate Hoffelder · digital textbooks, lawsuit → 1 Comment

Picture-21-300x166[1]Boundless is back in the news again this week with a new product launch and a possible resolution to a year old lawsuit. Given that the possible settlement was announced only weeks before the new launch, I don’t think they are unrelated.
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Reuters: Textbook Publishers Like Digital Textbooks Because There’s No Used Market (Yet)

July 25th, 2013 by Nate Hoffelder · digital textbooks → 1 Comment

3775355935_d51cd3e54a[1]Reuters published an article earlier this week that is worth your attention. The have noticed that textbook publishers are going digital because it kills off the used textbook market. (This comes as little surprise to me; I have been saying that for a couple years now.)

From the article:
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Inkling Raises $16 Million, Doubles Down on a Tepid Market

July 17th, 2013 by Nate Hoffelder · digital textbooks → 3 Comments

inklingThe digital textbook maker extraordinaire Inkling announced this morning that they’ve completed a new round of funding. They’ve picked up another $16 million in capital from Sequoia Capital and other existing investors, including, Felicis Ventures, Tenaya Capital, and JAFCO Technology Partners.
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Increased Piracy Among College Students Means A Shrinking Market for Digital Textbooks

July 17th, 2013 by Nate Hoffelder · digital textbooks, piracy → 7 Comments

3828827577_d386cd7b35[1]The Book Industry Study Group (BISG) has a new report out this week on the buying, non-buying, and reading habits of US college students. I only have the press release and not the full report (it costs $$$$), but if the report matches the driblets of info in the press release then I would be trying to exit the college textbook market right now.
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Coursera, Chegg, and the Education Enclosure Movement

May 9th, 2013 by Audrey Watters · digital textbooks, opinion → 1 Comment

2066187917_be7ccf5d5b[1]The online learning startup Coursera and a handful of textbook publishers announced today that they’re teaming up to make certain digital course materials available to students enrolled in Coursera’s classes. Cengage Learning, Macmillan Higher Education, Oxford University Press, SAGE, and Wiley will offer versions of their textbooks via an e-reader provided by Chegg.
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The Perils of Digital Textbooks – CourseSmart Crashes During Exam Week

April 26th, 2013 by Nate Hoffelder · digital textbooks → 4 Comments

7797311412_4c0f48ec93[1]Like many other people I have a less than perfectly reliable internet connection, and that has taught me that having an offline copy is only prudent. So when I read about the problems that the Fairfax Public Schools and now CourseSmart have encountered with online textbooks, I can’t help but wonder why no one saw it coming.

CourseSmart is widely recognized as the leader of the digital textbook market. This start-up was founded by major textbook publishers in 2007 and is now used by hundreds of schools. Or at least it was used by hundreds of schools – right up until the servers crashed earlier this week.
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Everyone Panic: CourseSmart Now Lets Instructors Digitally Stalk Students

April 11th, 2013 by Nate Hoffelder · digital textbooks → 3 Comments

This weeks distraction from real news comes to us from the New York Times. This august publication discovered earlier this week that CourseSmart’s new analytics tools were enabling instructors to spy on students’ study habits:

Several Texas A&M professors know something that generations of teachers could only hope to guess: whether students are reading their textbooks.
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University of Wisconsin Expands Digital Textbook Rental Pilot This Spring

February 19th, 2013 by Nate Hoffelder · digital textbooks → No Comments

bh1_1[1]I have long argued that textbook rentals aren’t as good of a value for college students as textbook arbitrage (buying and selling back textbooks), but it looks like I might have to eat my words.

The University of Wisconsin Stout is one of a couple dozen American universities that directly rents paper textbooks to student, and this past Fall semester they started dabbling in renting digital textbooks. The pilot program is going to be expanded this Spring, and the early results from the Fall semester have already revealed some interesting info on cost and user adoption.
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Textbook Prices Continue to Increase As Student Adoption Drops

February 17th, 2013 by Nate Hoffelder · digital textbooks, surveys & polls → 2 Comments

6284084526_651abb221b[1]A couple weeks ago the Book Industry Study Group held a conference called Making Information Pay for Higher Ed Publishing. I was not at the conference myself, but I just came across the slides for the presentations and they reveal some interesting info about the college textbook market.

Prices are still going up (feeding into the price bubble), students (still) aren’t adopting textbooks in droves, and one new detail is revealed in the slides: students own tablets but aren’t studying on them.
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