The market for digital book readers is heating up, as is the demand (and supply) of digital books including all sorts of works of fiction and non-fiction. But one eBook market that’s still stuck in the “great potential” stage is the education market. Textbooks cost a lot of money, partially due to their limited printing runs. And they weigh a lot, which can be a problem if you have to shove a half dozen textbooks or more into a child’s backpack.
Some schools have tested the Amazon Kindle and other digital book readers as replacements for the traditional textbooks with mixed results. Now the folks at Barnes & Noble think they have another solution, and they call it NOOKstudy.
The idea is that you can use the NOOKstudy software on any PC and Mac. You don’t need a dedicated eBook reader, just the laptop or desktop computer you may already have. Not only can you download and organize textbooks using NOOKstudy, but you can also manage class syllabuses and take notes.
You can also highlight passages in textbooks, and not only can you search for text in each book, but you can also search your notes. It all sounds a lot more efficient than scribbling in the margins of a physical book — and it won’t bring down the resell value of the book. Unfortunately that’s because you can’t resell an eBook.
NOOKstudy has been in private testing for a little while, but the software won’t publicly released until August. You can sign up to get an alert when it is available.