Apple 'reinvents textbook on iPad'

Computer giant Apple is moving into the education market with a new range of interactive textbooks for the iPad.

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The company has also revealed a new version of its iBooks app, snappily titled iBooks 2.0, at a launch event in New York.

Marketing boss Phil Schiller said: "It's not hard to see that the textbook is not always the ideal learning tool. It's a bit cumbersome."

The new iPad textbooks feature interactive quizzes and can be annotated or highlighted with a quick touch of the finger.

The first ones are available today, and have been produced in partnership with publishing giant Dorling Kindersley and with the E.O Wilson Biodiversity Foundation.

The demonstration to the press showed how the "books" remain text-led when the iPad is held in the portrait position, but interactive elements are revealed when the device is turned sideways into the landscape position.

Apple has also created iBooks Author, a tool which makes it easier to build interactive textbooks and which Apple has described as the equivalent of its popular GarageBand app for budding musicians.

It also unveiled a new app for iTunes U, the university-dedicated section of the iTunes store, which will allow tutors to set material to download, manage courses and assign work to students.

What do you reckon? Will Apple take over education? Should it? Comment below...