Apple Opens iBooks Textbooks and iTunes U Course Manager to the Whole World

Cupertino taps new markets across Asia, Latin America, Europe

Apple is rolling out iBooks Textbooks and iTunes U Course Manager across Asia, Latin America, Europe, and numerous other territories around the globe, as part of a big initiative to expand worldwide access to educational content.

iBooks Textbooks are known for their dynamic and interactive content that engages students and teachers alike. One key advantage of using these electronic books is that they can also be updated on a regular basis.

iTunes U Course Manager is now available in 70 countries, including Russia, Thailand, and Malaysia. Educators can create and distribute courses for their own classrooms, or share them via iTunes U for everyone to use.

Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, said, “The incredible content and tools available for iPad provide teachers with new ways to customize learning unlike ever before.”

“We can’t wait to see how teachers in even more countries will create their new lesson plans with interactive textbooks, apps and rich digital content,” Cue added.

Apple brags that iBooks Textbooks don’t weigh down a backpack and don’t need to be returned. Key features include interactive animations, flick-through photo galleries, tap-to-play videos, and rotating 3D diagrams.

iBooks Textbooks cover 100 percent of US high school core curriculum and the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) core curriculum in the UK, according to the press release.

Available as a free download from the iTunes App Store, iTunes U opens up access to the world’s largest online catalog of free educational content.

“With iTunes U Course Manager educators can quickly and easily share their knowledge and resources directly with their class or to a global audience on iTunes U,” Apple says.

“iTunes U Course manager also gives teachers the ability to integrate their own documents as part of course curriculum, as well as content from the Internet, hundreds of thousands of books on the iBooks Store, over 750,000 materials from existing iTunes U collections, or any of the more than one million iOS apps available on the revolutionary App Store,” the company concludes.

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