Wednesday, February 3, 2010

More on textbooks :Nokia, Pearson partner for mobile education program in China.

Telco expansion is a powerful engine of new growth. (FYI the other one is a resugrent Auto Industry. Notice what happened to Sirius the last couple of days? )

My bet is that as soon as a Print global makes the telco connection, my portfolio will be even happier than it's been this last year and the high school dropout problem will be solved much sooner, rather than later.

In any case, here's another data point from today. Keep in mind that Nokia has, I believe, 40% of the global handset market and Pearson is Pearson.
Nokia, Pearson partner for mobile education program - Mobile Marketer - Content:
"The two companies partnered to help the Mobiledu education program appeal to more consumers. Nokia said that it believes the combination of Pearson’s content and its Mobiledu service will offer an even more compelling proposition for customers and partners in the future.

Since its launch, in 2007 Mobiledu has attracted 20 million subscribers in China, with 1.5 million people actively using the service each month."

iPad, shmiPad "students remain big fans of printed books"

In today's Wall Street Journal there's a story about most of the big textbook publishers getting religion . . again. The silly meme is that Print is Dead. This time it plays out with the iPad. Full story:
Major textbook publishers have struck deals with software company ScrollMotion Inc. to adapt their textbooks for the electronic page, as the industry embraces a hope that digital devices such as Apple Inc.'s iPad will transform the classroom.
Not surprisingly, the usual cast of characters are moving together.

"People have been talking about the impact of technology on education for 25 years. It feels like it is really going to happen in 2010," said Rik Kranenburg, group president of higher education for the education unit of McGraw-Hill Cos. and one of the publishers involved in the project.

Other publishers include Houghton Mifflin Harcourt K-12, which is a unit of Education Media & Publishing Group Ltd.; Pearson PLC's Pearson Education, and Washington Post Co.'s Kaplan Inc., known for its test-prep and study guides.

But there is an inconvenient truth.

Maureen McMahon, president of Kaplan Publishing, said a recent Kaplan study showed that students remain big fans of printed books but that they would be more receptive to e-textbooks on portable digital devices.

The problem with textbooks is not that they are printed. The problem is they are too slow and expensive. Like many globals, they ignore the facts and buzz substitutes for reality. Best guess is that Kaplan will figure it out first. They generate most of the profit for the Washington Post anyways.

Consider study guides with QR codes instead of textbooks.
Plus you can get all those great analytics. Plus you can print it out on your MFP and take it to the local coffee shop to discuss with your friends.