Schools Signing up for Kindle Pilot Programs
According to an article at msnbc.com, several schools will be running a Kindle Pilot Program, putting a number of Kindle DX units in students’ hands for academic use. The Kindles are to be sold to the schools at a 50% discount, and the students will be allowed to use the Kindles free of charge.
The five other schools launching DX trials this fall — Case Western Reserve University, Pace University, Princeton University, Reed College, and Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia — said they plan to offer the Kindle edition of selected texts from three publishers: Cengage Learning, Pearson Education and Wiley, together representing more than 60 percent of the U.S. higher-education textbook market.
Pace said it will get Kindles at a 50 percent discount from Amazon for the 50 students in its pilot program, and then provide them to the students at no charge.
Another section of the article continues to hope for lower electronic textbook prices. Arizona State is hoping for the price to be cut in half. I think that’s a little drastic considering that Amazon is currently losing money with most Kindle version purchases. Though, anyone who’s been to college knows that the price of textbooks is the result of obscene markup. So it’s possible students could see a significant drop in price. We will just have to wait and see, though, as Amazon has yet to comment on how the Kindle textbooks will be priced.
I’m really interested to see how students and teaches feel about the Kindle once the pilot programs have been completed. I still hold to the opinion that many students will be very willing to adopt the Kindle once they have used one. So much so that I wrote an article about Students Using Kindle Textbooks.
An interesting point I’d like to explore is that I haven’t heard of any of the competition going as far as running pilot programs at schools. On top of that, I haven’t heard of any negotiations between Amazon’s competitors and publishers. Amazon is has targeted schools and students and is going after them quite aggressively. If they can secure the academic market, you can bet the Kindle will be around for years to come.
If anyone out there has information about Amazon’s competitors targeting students and schools, please leave a comment below.