Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Apple Announces January 19 “Education Event” in New York

Here’s formal confirmation about Apple’s event in New York City this month: The company is inviting media to an “education event,” Jan. 19 at the Guggenheim Museum.

My colleague John Paczkowski’s sources have already told him that Apple was planning to use the event to talk about a textbook initiative, and today’s brief invitation certainly doesn’t discourage that line of thinking. Per John’s Jan. 3 story:

Sources close to the company tell AllThingsD that the event will involve an initiative related to iBooks in education, presumably with some sort of tie-in to iTunes U.
Details beyond that are slim, though we’re told that this is an effort Jobs had been involved with in the months prior to his death. That could mean that it’s the textbooks-on-iPads plan that Jobs famously discussed with biographer Walter Isaacson. Fox’s Clayton Morris is hearing something similar.
The textbook market is certainly ripe for digital disruption, but the players that have emerged so far are pumping in a lot of cash with little to show for it.

If you want to start speculating — of course you do — it’s worth noting that none of the big textbook publishers are working with iBooks and Apple’s iOS ecosystem in any significant way, though Apple and the publishers have had on-and-off conversations for years. Perhaps some of that changes this month, or perhaps Apple pushes into education without working with the traditional players.

This will be Apple’s second visit to the iconic Guggenheim in a year. Last February, media boss Eddy Cue showed up there for the launch of the Daily, News Corp.’s tablet newspaper. (News Corp. also owns this Web site.)

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Nobody was excited about paying top dollar for a movie about WikiLeaks. A film about the origins of would have done better.

— Gitesh Pandya of comments on the dreadful opening weekend box office numbers for “The Fifth Estate.”