New Kindle E-Reader Enters Textbook Market

Amazon strikes deal with three major textbook publishers.

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Tech geeks are buzzing about Amazon's new Kindle DX, a wide-format electronic book reader that will launch this summer. But colleges and universities also have a newfound stake in its future, as Amazon works to bring content from publishers who control around 60 percent of the textbook market to the E-reader, Inside Higher Ed reports.

According to Amazon officials, the new Kindle will offer textbooks from three major publishers, Cengage Learning, Pearson, and Wiley, this summer. E-textbooks are not necessarily new, but these partnerships might be game-changing in the latent E-textbook market.

Amazon will run pilot programs at six institutions—Arizona State, Case Western Reserve, Pace University, Princeton, Reed College, and the University of Virginia's Darden School of Business. School officials hope the Kindle, which will cost $489, might eventually defray textbook costs and also reduce the amount of paper (in textbooks or printed course packs) used per student.