Amazon on Monday launched Kindle textbook rentals for the 2011 school year in a move that aims to dent college bookstores as well as hefty book prices.
In a statement, Amazon said that it will offer textbooks from John Wiley & Sons, Elsevier and Taylor & Francis. Under the program, students will rent Kindle textbooks and pay with for the time they're using the books.
The custom rental periods---between 30 days and 360 days---is likely to come in handy to students.
For Amazon, the benefits are clear. For starters, Amazon can get students on the Kindle platform early. In addition, Amazon's Kindle apps can reach multiple devices---including those Apple iPads all over campus.
Strategically, Amazon's textbook move is going to be a shot at Barnes & Noble, which operates campus bookstores. Barnes & Noble also allows for e-textbooks via its NookStudy application as well as offers physical textbook rentals.