The iBookstore / iBooks Thread

Discussion in 'iOS & iOS Apps' started by johannes, Apr 14, 2010.

  1. johannes

    johannes PhilMUG Chairman
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    One of the major selling points of the iPad for me is the iBookstore and of course, the iBooks that come with it. In fact, I had a Kindle in my Amazon.com shopping cart for some time and was a hair from ordering one but once the iPad was announced, I found myself removing the Kindle from my cart that very day.

    Anyway, we have a thread for the various iPad Apps (games, productivity tools, etc.). I figured we should have a separate thread for iBooks. In the event this thread doesn't prosper, I shall merge it with the iPad Apps thread.

    Let's discuss iBooks we came across and loved (a.k.a. iBooks we couldn't put down). Let's post iBook recommendations, sales, new features, and the like.

    For starters, I now have 3 books in my iPad. The first was the free Winnie the Pooh. The other two are:
    - The Hobbit ($9.99) by Tolkien
    - The Lord of the Rings ($14.99 for the complete story) by Tolkien

    Thankfully, you can download them first as samples (they give you a few pages for free). Flipped a couple of pages and found them to my liking. Two clicks later, I'm downloading the full version.

    I bought these because they're some of my favorite books. Loved the books. Loved the movies. And instead of hauling a thick LOTR book (thick enough to serve as a doorstop or to break a window in case of fire), I have all 3 books + The Hobbit in a lightweight package in the form of an iPad!

    How about you, folks? What iBooks have you bought lately and what are you looking at for your next purchase? Care to recommend a few to your fellow MUGgers?
     
  2. rsa

    rsa Member

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    How did you purchase your books? Did you use a US credit card or iTunes gift card or can you use a local credit card?
     
  3. SE20

    SE20 PhilMUG Addict Member
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    Thanks for this thread. I can see now that reading books and magazines is the app for me for the iPad. I've been using my iPhone to read books and have been considering the Kindle, just like you johannes.

    Eager to read more about how to buy and what the reading experience is like.
     
  4. johannes

    johannes PhilMUG Chairman
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    I have a US iTunes account which I load up using iTunes GCs. Same principle as buying apps, music, and videos from the US store.

    To start reading in your iPad, download the free iBooks app from the iTunes iPad App Store. Once installed, just tap it to show your iBooks library. Everybody gets a free copy of Winnie the Pooh so you already have 1 book in your shelf.

    To shop for more iBooks, tap the Store button on the upper-left corner of your screen. Your shelf revolves to reveal the store/iBookstore. If you're unsure about a particular book, you can download it as a sample first. Within seconds, you'll have a couple of pages for FREE. If you don't like it, no worries; it's free. If you like it, click the Buy button. Downloads don't take too long. I mentioned this in another thread but surprisingly, The Lord of the Rings book was just a mere 10+ MB download.

    As for the reading experience: Here's what I wrote in the iPad hands-on thread:

    I love how you can actually turn pages and how you can even see the text "bleeding" at the back of each page. To jump to chapters, simply go to the table of contents and tap on the chapter title. Double-tap a word to highlight it or to search for its definition... using the built-in dictionary. No scrolls/joysticks to select words. No buttons to turn pages. As with music and videos in the iPhone and iPad, you can "touch" your iBook. It truly is an awesome experience that's not as "cold" as other e-readers.
     
  5. alfiesy

    alfiesy Active Member

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    @johannes, How is reading on the iPad for extended periods?
     
  6. madman101

    madman101 Member

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    are we also including the Kindle for iPad in this discussion?
     
  7. rvaph

    rvaph Active Member
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    Like Johannes, this is the primary reason I am buying an iPad. I will use it primarily to read the newly released non-fiction books that are not yet available in the country. While waiting for it to be released here, I am still using a Kindle for Mac/Blueberry to read my books. Right now I am reading "On the Brink" by former US Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson. Are books of this type already available on iBookstore?
     
  8. irisgodd3ss

    irisgodd3ss Member

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    Definitely would like to know the same thing. :)
     
  9. johannes

    johannes PhilMUG Chairman
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    Disclaimer:
    I tend to read (regular books) with the book on a table or on my lap and I applied the same mannerism to the iPad. (you'll develop the same habit if most of your books are thick hardcovers like history books and cookbooks)

    However, out of curiosity, I read on the iPad without the aid of a table nor my lap last night. You can read while holding it with one hand unsupported but depending on your endurance, you'll end up holding it with both hands. (which is a good idea, actually, since you don't really want to drop your iPad now, do you?)

    Don't get me wrong. It's heavier than a regular paperback but it's not really that heavy. I dunno if it's just me but it feels more natural holding it with 2 hands, especially at landscape mode.

    In terms of graphics, you can adjust brightness, text size, and even change the font of the entire book, depending on how good/bad your eyesight is and of course, your surroundings.

    Some people are probably asking, "masakit ba sa mata?" The answer is, "No." As I've said, you can adjust the settings to better suit your eyesight and surroundings. And yes, we all have different reading habits so experiences will vary.

    And oh, you don't get that somewhat irritating flicker when turning pages, which is what you see when turning pages on a Kindle.

    Overall, reading on the iPad is pretty good so far. I'll know and share more when I have sufficient quality time with it over the weekend and during my trip.

    ============

    I've added 3 new books to my iBooks Library:

    - The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (free)
    - Molto Gusto by Mario Batali (italian cooking)
    - The Pacific by Hugh Ambrose (just in time for the HBO mini-series)

    It's a joy seeing these book covers on the shelf... in color. And it's an even greater joy reading them in the iPad. Perfect timing for my trip next week!

    So, folks. Any iBooks you care to recommend to your fellow MUGgers?
     
  10. kentamayo

    kentamayo Active Member

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    Agreed there Johannes, I don't usually read much, but reading on the iPad is just pure joy for me...

    Right now I'm redwing "Getting Things Done" by David Allen
     
  11. reddddd

    reddddd Member

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    IPad Apps, particularly IBooks helped me get back into reading.. Now im reading again! Paid magazines comes really cheap against their print counterpart. Since Im into photography, my bookshelf is loaded with both free and paid books :)
     
  12. rvaph

    rvaph Active Member
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    I'm glad to know that iBooks is making reading fun again. Another advantage is that with ebooks, there will be no need to cut down trees to make paper. I only hope that there would come a time that technology would duplicate the scent of new books. hehehe...
     
  13. carloople

    carloople Member

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    My only problem with iBooks is that I have to go through the lengthy process of finding iTunes cards (online or Power Mac). The good thing with the Kindle app is that you can use your Paypal account which is just connected to your local credit card.

    Tried reading on the iPad already using the Kindle iPad app and it's an amazing experience. No problems with the eyes yet. Read for 2-3 hours straight.
     
  14. antz

    antz Active Member

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    I just purchased my first iBook last night and just like johannes and ken, i don't read that much but got hooked last night with Harlan Coben's Caught

    Guess, I'm done with apps, bought what I needed so far and will invest on iBooks from now on.
     
  15. johannes

    johannes PhilMUG Chairman
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    I just love the fact that you can download books as samples first in the iBookstore. And they're pretty generous, too. I got around 40 pages free in some of my samples.

    I just downloaded the following books by Chelsea Handler (of Chelsea Lately fame):
    - Are you there, Vodka? It's me, Chelsea
    - Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang

    I also downloaded "What the Dog Saw" by Malcolm Gladwell
     
  16. antz

    antz Active Member

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    Also purchased Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang, one hilarious read. to thinkI am not a fan nor follower.
     
  17. irisgodd3ss

    irisgodd3ss Member

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    Quick question - what's the average size of a book from iBooks or Kindle? :)
     
  18. besprenbrian

    besprenbrian Member

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    Guys can you buy iTune GC using credit card in philippines? I also want to buy Magazines and books in ibookstore is this possible?
     
  19. johannes

    johannes PhilMUG Chairman
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    The Lord of the Rings (which is a rather thick book) was a 10+ MB download. I'll double-check my other iBooks tonight.

    ===============

    Here's a fascinating book I got recently from the iBookstore:

    A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Future (Twists and Turns and Lessons Learned) (by Michael J. Fox)

    Michael J. Fox is inspiring, as always.

    @ antz88c: Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang was a riot! I was reading it on the flight to Singapore last week and I struggled really hard to muffle my laughter!
     
  20. aczafra

    aczafra Member

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    Yes. I tried it a couple of days ago. Bought a $20 Itunes GC using my local credit card.
     

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