Amazon – Buy access to the online version and you can read your textbook immediately. This has saved me in a pinch on some rare occasions that none of the above techniques helped me. This is a good last-minute emergency tactic. If you own a Kindle, you can download the digital textbook you need right onto your reading device. You do not need a Kindle in order to read the online textbooks for sale on Amazon, but you will need to download a Kindle Reading application that will allow you to download textbooks to read right from your computer. One nice thing about Amazon’s online textbooks is that they are accessible via various electronic devices such as the iPhone, iPad, Android, BlackBerry, PC and Mac. Also, you can usually download the first chapter of the textbook you need for free.

It was inevitable, electronic books are going to one day completely place paper books into the realm of the vinyl record and the 8-track cassette. The new venture of Amazon into the world of textbooks is just the beginning of the end. Yes, Amazon, in addition to its wide variety of eBooks, is now offering textbooks online to college students via its eBook reader, the Kindle. Among the benefits provided by these Amazon online textbooks is the fact that students can save as much as 80% over paper books.

Students can choose how long they want to rent their Amazon online textbooks for, from 30 days to 360 days. When the period of rental expires students are presented with the choice of either buying their Amazon online textbooks outright, or else renting them again. The flexibility in pricing and the ease with which the Kindle allows this to be done makes a difference for a broke college student.

Sure, it is possible to resell a paper book and so this move by Amazon is certain to eat into that income-stream for college students, but the savings and convenience from using Kindle textbooks cannot be ignored. It should be noted, also, that many of the more popular textbooks used on college campuses are not available as Amazon online textbooks for the Kindle at present. The key words there being “at present”. It is inevitable that they will be at some point, so it may be wise for those who have these books on hand to take advantage of the fact that they can still be sold. Still, the fact that the Amazon online textbooks will now eat into the market for used paper textbooks means that there is some question as to how well it will be received.

It should be noted that the available inventory of Amazon online textbooks include a disproportionate number of technical and social sciences textbooks. Not so many humanities texts.

It is not necessary to own a Kindle in order to access these Amazon online textbooks. Blackberry has a Kindle app that users can install, as do users of Android Phones and iPads. These apps are all free, the users only have to pay for the textbooks. The process is simple, visit the Amazon site and search for the book, the book’s page will indicate whether it has a Kindle version or not. Simply purchase the Kindle version and download it to the device.

For those who like to take notes in the margins of textbooks, note that they will face no restrictions with the Kindle as there is a notation function that makes it possible to write notes to go along with their Kindle textbook.

Note that the latest version of the Kindle is on the way: the full-color Kindle Fire will not only have the ability to display books, including Amazon online textbooks, it will also have a web-browser and be reasonably priced ($199), perfect for college students who cannot afford an iPad, which is many.

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