Will eBook readers become an integral part of the future of online courseware as well as traditional education systems? It all depends on the usability of the readers. According to Knowledge Center analyst J. Gerry Purdy, successful eBook readers will have to offer a number of features that make them preferable to the printed page. One important feature will be the size of an eBook reader. A good size would be a 6-inch by 8-inch diagonal display, and very thin like the iPod touch.
A successful eBook reader should also able to turn instantly on and off, unlike traditional online courseware material which is available to users only after booting up a computer, loading a website, etc. An ideal reader should also have a natural, sensible user interface that doesn’t require a user’s manual. Online courseware learners using eBook readers should ideally be able to pick up the reader, turn it on and start reading.
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