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CourseSmart brings textbooks to an iPhone near you

Casey Johnston

The electronic textbooks pandemic, er, market, continues to spread its influence to handheld gadgets: PC World reports that CourseSmart, an e-textbook publisher, has created an iPhone application, eTextbooks for the iPhone [iTunes link], to make its entire 7,000+ title catalog available on your index card of a screen.

CourseSmart, which does not publish books itself, sells downloadable electronic versions of textbooks through its website that can also be viewed online once they're purchased. The free iPhone application just adds an extra point of access, and falls on the "internet" side of the fence-you can't actually download the whole textbook to your phone, so the experience may be a bit shoddy when you're trying to flip through the pages during an exam in a basement classroom.

The application is also continually advertised as allowing access to 7,000 titles, but it is important to note that you only have access to titles you have already paid for through their site (pedantic, I know, but I found myself wondering about this point after reading the announcement). A tiny LCD screen has little value for long library sessions, but the teeny version of your book should work in a pinch when you forget Gauss' Law right before your physics exam. Just hope that your classroom isn't underground.

[PC World via Engadget]

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