Algebra, Biology, Geometry—these have never been particularly exciting words when it comes to textbooks, but that could change today. Apple's attempt at reinventing learning is officially online and ready for download—with each title offered at only 15 bucks.
So far the iTunes selection includes the aforementioned titles, along with E.O. Wilson's Life on Earth (first two chapters free!), Chemistry, Environmental Science, and Physics. That makes for eight textbooks in all, covering a decent range of topics but nothing too drilled down. Interesting, too, that Apple's taking its textbook offensive to high schools first, not colleges. Possibly because high schools encompass a narrower curricula. Also: get 'em while they're young.
One potential hiccup to the textbook plan? These puppies are huge, over a gig on average, with Biology tipping the scales at 2.77GB. They may not weigh down your backpack, but they're going to fill up your iPad pretty damn quickly. Looks like the money you saved by switching from hardcover is going to have to go towards a higher storage iPad.
Apple's clearly starting with the fundamentals here, and publishing partners include the big three: McGraw-Hill, Pearson, and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (although the latter doesn't have any available titles yet). But this library should be fleshed out very fast, very soon. [iTunes]