Pearson Education Launches New Digital Textbook Service

Pearson Education increases choice and value for U.S. college students

Upper Saddle River, NJ - Pearson Education, the world's leading education company, and Safari® Books Online today announced plans to launch a comprehensive digital textbook program for college students. The program, called SafariX Textbooks OnlineTM, will offer WebBooks as a new option to the print textbook, saving students 50% off the suggested list price of the print equivalent edition. Safari® Books Online is a Pearson Education and O'Reilly Media, Inc. joint venture.

Beginning this fall, students can choose to buy a print edition textbook or access the same course-critical content by subscribing to one or more of over 300 SafariX WebBooks available this year at . The WebBooks will offer all the convenience and interactive benefits of the Web, allowing students to print pages, make annotations, take notes, search the full text, and add bookmarks to organize their study, anywhere they have browser access.

SafariX Textbooks OnlineTM will be a significant new addition to PearsonChoices, which offers the highest quality learning programs and a wide choice of media, formats and price points.

"For decades, our imprints have supported America's college students and faculty with a range of innovative learning programs that enhance the education process," said Will Ethridge, President of Pearson's Higher Education, International, and Professional Group. "The recent public concern over the rising cost of higher education has reinforced our strategy that has been years in the making.  Our current print and digital choices address faculty and student needs for learning materials that fit their particular educational goals and budgets. SafariX is an innovative way of adding further value and choice."

The PearsonChoices program represents Pearson's commitment to providing significant flexibility and value for hundreds of its leading titles. Each title in the PearsonChoices program is available in a range of print and digital formats.  Faculty and students can choose from low-cost alternate print editions, custom editions built around their courses, Text/Web combinations, SafariX WebBooks, and the traditional textbook.

Pearson Higher Education offers leading textbooks in every major discipline area from Pearson-branded imprints Prentice Hall, Addison-Wesley, Benjamin Cummings, Allyn & Bacon, and Longman.  A pioneer in online learning, Pearson's Higher Education imprints support more than two million college students in the U.S. with their popular online learning platforms including extensive Web support services like Research NavigatorTM , a student-friendly, Web-based tool that facilitates the research process with four exclusive databases, and The Tutor Center, a one-to-one tutoring service providing students personal access to instructors who can further explain concepts and solutions to problems in Pearson Higher Education texts.

Pearson's decision to offer a WebBook alternative to printed texts is supported by research into the changing educational needs of college students, faculty and authors, as well as a recognition of their concerns about the rising cost of a college education. In the preliminary findings of a current Student Monitor survey, half of all the students questioned said they are likely to purchase a low cost online text, assuming a savings of $25.  Of those students surveyed, 31% said that they do not buy 100% of their required texts.

Ethridge added, "We're committed to continuing to work closely with student groups, faculty, authors and bookstores to identify practical responses to the escalating cost of higher education."

Philip Kotler, Professor of International Marketing at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University, and the author of the world's leading marketing text, commented, "As a long-time textbook author, I am sympathetic to the concerns of students over the increasing cost of higher education.  And as a marketing scholar, my message to companies has always been that they need to respond to changing consumer needs. I applaud Pearson for this new initiative and I am happy to be part of it.  Students and professors need more options, and Pearson is providing them some bold and helpful alternatives."

Steven Beebe, Professor of Communications Studies at Texas State University-San Marcos and the author of leading textbooks in the field of communications and public speaking, added, "As the father of a current college student (and another son who recently graduated from college), my wife and I know first-hand about the increasing investment that both parents and students are required to make in higher education.  As an author who can empathize with the challenge of making a college education a reality, I'm very pleased to be part of Pearson's innovative efforts to make educational resources affordable for today's college students.  Once again Pearson is demonstrating its partnership with both educators and students to provide creative options for students while also being a leader in managing costs."

Along with Kotler's and Beebe's seminal textbooks, SafariX Textbooks OnlineTM will feature such widely used textbooks as Elemental Geosystems, 4th Edition by Robert W. Christopherson and Java: How to Program, 6th Edition by Harvey M. Deitel and Paul J. Deitel.  Other textbooks planned for release on SafariX Textbooks Online? will be posted on in August.

The SafariX Textbooks OnlineTM service will be delivered using a proven and secure platform for digital book delivery, developed through Safari® Books Online, LLC, a joint venture between Pearson Technology Group, the world's leading publisher of textbooks for IT professionals, and O'Reilly Media, Inc.  Sean Devine, Managing Director of Safari® Books Online, LLC, commented, "In the three years since its inception, Safari has grown its paid B2C subscriber base to approximately 25,000 users and has developed a corporate client base of more than 400 accounts from small workgroups to enterprise-wide contracts, with as many as 40,000 unique users.  Hundreds of thousands of students have access to Safari's technical e-reference library, through Safari contracts with 400 academic libraries. The time is right to expand this proven platform into WebBooks and offer its capabilities across all of Higher Education publishing, for the benefit of all Higher Education students."

About Pearson Education

Educating 100 million people worldwide, Pearson Education is the global leader in educational publishing. With brands such as Pearson Prentice Hall, Pearson Longman, Pearson Addison-Wesley, Pearson Allyn & Bacon, Pearson Benjamin Cummings, and others, Pearson Education provides quality content, assessment tools and educational services in all available media, spanning the learning curve from birth through college and beyond. Pearson Education is part of Pearson (NYSE: PSO; FTSE: PSON), the international media company. Pearson's businesses also include the Financial Times Group and the Penguin Group.

To view the Electronic Press Kit, go to

About PearsonChoices

Pearson Higher Education is committed to providing significant flexibility and value for hundreds of its leading titles. Each title in the PearsonChoices program is available in several formats in addition to SafariX WebBooks and the traditional textbook.  Faculty can also choose from brief, custom, and text/Web combinations, and now SafariX WebBooks:

  • Text/Web Combinations
    MyLab and OneKey are powerful interactive learning environments for many college courses.  Used with or without a print textbook, each MyLab or OneKey product provides a wealth of teaching and learning resources, with affordable pricing options.
  • Alternate Print Editions
    These are brief or alternate format titles, usually priced at 25%-33% less than traditional print books and include: Penguin Academics and  Pearson Prentice Hall Portfolio Editions, both price-friendly, streamlined books; and Books a la Carte, three-hole punched, portable, and inexpensive versions of textbooks.
  • Pearson Custom Texts
    Whether an instructor is looking to author his/her own instructional materials; build a textbook from our library of copyrighted content; reorganize existing text; or do all of the above, Pearson Custom Publishing provides the industry-leading solution.

Each title in PearsonChoices will always:

  • · Be available for sale in professor-required bundles or on its own.
  • · Have suggested list pricing based on generally accepted bookstore markup and will be available on our Web sites so students can know what they should expect to pay.
  • · Highlight all changes in new editions.

For more about PearsonChoices, see:


About Safari® Books Online

Safari® Books Online is a joint venture between the industry's leading technical publishers, O'Reilly Media, Inc., and The Pearson Technology Group.  Safari's flagship service, Safari® Tech Books Online, is the premier electronic reference library for programming and IT departments. Unlike an online bookstore, Safari is a fully searchable database of the electronic versions of books from O'Reilly Media, Inc. and Pearson's many imprints: Addison-Wesley Professional, Adobe Press, Cisco Press, Macromedia Press, New Riders, Peachpit Press, Prentice Hall PTR, Sun Microsystems Press, Que and Sams. A growing number of titles from other publishers such as Microsoft Press and Thomson South-Western are also available. Safari's portfolio includes four additional electronic reference libraries:  Safari Bookshelf for the individual technologist, Safari® HelpDesk Online for enterprise knowledge workers, Safari® Business Books Online for business professionals and Safari® Enterprise Library. For more information about Safari® Books Online, visit

Further information

David Hakensen, Vice President, Public Relations
Pearson Education
Office: 952-681-3040; Cell: 612-840-4592

Wendy Spiegel, Senior Vice President, Communications
Pearson Education
Office: 212-782-3482