Portfolio.com reports (here) an Ars Technica post about rumored moves into eTextBooks by Amazon with the Kindle, or a new "education focused" Kindle device.
It's a bit short on content and real facts (an analyst heard from an insider etc etc..) but would be an interesting move all the same.
College students are a digitaly comfortable, device aware crowd who could do with paying less and carrying around less weight of text books that's for sure. Issues I foresee are:-
- They are rapidly becoming all "laptop" equiped. Will laptops fulfill this need for them? Will they be willing to carry another device for reading?
- Availability of the correct content for their studies - and the source of that and the business model (if any).
Open source (free) text book content could blow the whole thing apart but would leave it as a device business model with no revenue flowing for content, at least initially. Maybe if that happened the publishers of textbooks would "give in" and move their "quality content" en masse to this new medium....and then we'd be off and running.
One to be watched for sure...