iPhone and iPod Join iPad in Access to iBooks
Apple CEO Steve Jobs confirmed today that iBooks will soon be available for both the iPhone – including the new iPhone 4 announced today – and the iPod Touch, extending the electronic bookstore application from the iPad to its sister devices.
Jobs told the audience this morning at Apple's Worldwide Developer's Conference that iPad users have downloaded 5 million books, representing 22 percent share of total eBook sales. While iPad sales reached over 1 million since its release in early April, the latest move by Apple will make the popular iBooks app and its iBookstore available to millions of iPhone and iPod Touch users.
The iBooks app has been improved by Apple and will now offer a new note taking feature that looks a lot like sticky notes, a new tap to bookmark feature, and the ability to view and read PDF files. PDFs will get their own shelf in the iBooks library in order to separate them from digital books.
Jobs emphasized the fact that iBook users will be able to purchase and download a book to more than one device at no additional charge. iBooks can be downloaded wirelessly to iPhone, iPad and iPod. The reader's place in the book, bookmarks and notes will be synced across multiple devices. The new table of contents for all iBook capable devices will display bookmarks, notes and highlights.
Apple's multi-platform eBook store is not unique, however. Amazon makes a Kindle ebook reader app that can be used on the iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Blackberry phones, PCs, Macs, and soon Android phones .
Preorders for the new iPhone 4 begin June 15 and the new phone will arrive in stores June 24. The updated iBooks app along with access to the iBookstore will be available for iPhone and iPad users as well as those with an iPod touch later this month.