“CampusBooks.com compared pricing data for the top 100 college textbooks against Amazon’s new Kindle Rental service, and found that Kindle Rental often has the best prices, but only 18% of the titles. Renting a Kindle book for the advertised 30-day period yielded the highest savings, often in the double-digits over traditional rental, used and new textbooks, but only five of 100 titles were available for the month-long range. The other 13 titles available had minimum periods of 60 days, and the savings were less. However, if students were to rent via Kindle for a whole semester (120 days), only half of the time was Kindle Rental cheaper than buying and selling a used book . . . ”
Time Magazine Moneyland: Educational Financing: How Much Will Students Really Save Using Amazon’s E-Textbooks?
“It’s a very frustrating part of the college experience. You pay more than $100 for a textbook, haul it home and then never open it. You turn it in at the end of the semester and get a pittance back. Heck, even if you read the book, it’s hardly a bargain. Thankfully for broke college students everywhere, Amazon is changing up the model by offering e-textbook rentals.
With the launch of Kindle Textbook Rental this Monday, the company says students may be able to save as much as 80% off textbook prices. For a fee that in some cases is about 50% of the cost to buy a used textbook or own the Kindle edition, students can rent a book for a minimum of 30 days. At the end of the those 30 days they can extend the rental for as little as one day for an additional cost or choose to purchase the book . . . ”
“Can e-textbooks and accompanying rental services change the college publishing market? They can certainly try. Students are becoming more and more familiar with electronics and comfortable using a variety of OS platforms, and manufacturers know this. Amazon is the latest to offer an e-book rental service catering to students, but it’s hardly the first and has plenty of competitors vying for college kids’ hard-to-come-by dollars. Promises of savings and instant-accessibility are just a few of the temptations e-readers are throwing at academics, but here’s a breakdown of how a handful of these services compare . . . ”
“Because I spent my college years doing a lot of things I probably shouldn’t have been doing, I’ve retained precious few memories of my time in the hallowed halls of higher learning. One thing I do remember with absolute clarity: College textbooks are damn expensive. But when students head back to campus this fall, they’ll find a new, more affordable and more flexible option to the traditional bookstore shopping spree. Amazon.com this week launched Kindle Textbook Rental, enabling students to lease e-reader versions of tens of thousands of textbooks for as much as 80 percent off the list price . . . ”