Thursday, January 13, 2011

What EPUB3 has to Offer for Future E-Books

EPub is the open standard adopted by Apple for use in the iBooks app. Next version of EPub - version 3 - is scheduled for release in May. In my recent presentation, participants asked about accessibility - it's good to see that this upcoming version will have a greater focus on accessibility. Improved multimedia support and support for MathML are great additions. I can't wait to see the next generation of textbooks - this will be a dynamic, exciting space to watch in the next couple of years.

What to expect in EPUB3:
There are three key areas EPUB3 is focused around: language support, greater accessibility, and increased multimedia support.

EPUB3 will also be better at integrating the current DAISY accessibility standards, to help make reading devices of greater usefulness to visually impaired readers.

EPUB3 will be much more adept at supporting multimedia capabilities for both HTML5-based devices and the coming generation of tablets supporting both Flash and HTML5. It is hoped that in doing so, EPUB3 will help develop an enhanced ebook standard that can be used across a variety of media and content.

Other developments include enhanced metadata support for discoverability, better facilitation support for touchscreen devices, and support for MathML, which we hope will open up greater opportunities for textbook publishers.

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