Apple iPad will Support, Read Out Loud Free eBooks
Techtree News Staff, Mar 15, 2010 1128 hrs IST
Get all the free eBooks from Google Books, Gutenberg on your iPad
Apart from opening up its gates for iPad pre-orders, Apple has also updated iPad's product information page. It has now added new details about the iBook app which boasts of screen reader for iPad - VoiceOver, and EPUB book format support. This means that the iPad will read out free EPUB format eBooks available on Google Books and Project Gutenberg. Sounds like a win-win situation for early iPad adopters.
In about two hours since the iPad was available for pre-order, almost 50,000 iPads were booked, notes by Phillip Elmer-DeWitt at Fortune Brainstorm Tech blog. While the Apple iBook Store is due for arrival on April 3, the iBook App for iPad is already keeping everyone busy. The iPad's iBook App features page notes:
The iBooks app uses the ePub format - the most popular open book format in the world. That makes it easy for publishers to create iBooks versions of your favorite reads. And you can add free ePub titles to iTunes and sync them to the iBooks app on your iPad.
The ePub is an open book format widely used for publishers to create ebooks that would be easily viewable on several devices supporting ePub format support. In August 2009, Google had opened up its ePub Archive for download of over a million free eBooks. This was amazing for avid book readers as they don't have to be locked down and dependant on Apple's iBook store.
Another noteworthy detail on the iBook features page is:
iBooks works with VoiceOver, the screen reader in iPad, so it can read you the contents of any page.
So if your eyes are strained or you're too tired to read books by yourself, then VoiceOver screen reader will read out your books loud. This also makes iPad a good possession for the visually challenged folks and has been commended by National Federation of Blind.
These two updates will truly put iPad as premier option against all other eBook readers and tablets.