While Apple might seem busy releasing a brand new operating system and compatibility updates for their apps on the Mac App Store, that doesn’t mean apps on iOS haven’t been ignored. Pages, Numbers, Keynote, and iTunes U are all receiving small updates that improve compatibility with iCloud, and in iTunes U’s case, adds a way to share your favorite courses with friends through Twitter, Mail, and Messages.
Pages 1.6.1, Numbers 1.6.1, and Keynote 1.6.1
Pages, Numbers, and Keynote have received simple updates that improve compatibility with iCloud for instant document syncing. Document syncing requires Pages 4.2, Numbers 2.2, and Keynote 5.2 respectively on OS X Mountain Lion.
iTunes U 1.2
Sharing courses isn’t the only new feature — iTunes U 1.2 also adds the ability to search within posts, assignments, notes, and materials from the improved search feature from any subscribed course.
Apple has just announced and released the iTunes U App for iPhone and iPad. It’s a new app that lets teachers manage their iTunes U course and an app that helps students track all the content, assignments and messages from the courses that they study. iTunes U gives teachers the ability to customise their topics that they teach, give students information about office hours, post messages to their class and give students assignments.
The all-new iTunes U app enables students anywhere to tap into entire courses from the world’s most prestigious universities. -Eddy Cue
Effectively this new iTunes U app is similar to the various content management systems that are available for universities and other educational institutions. It’s fully featured with all the various video lectures, documents, apps and books available from within the app along with messages from teachers, the syllabus and even iBooks integration. In effect, it could be a great companion for any teacher or student. Over 100 courses have currently been created with the new iTunes U app from various universities and colleges across the US and further to that iTunes U is now available for K-12 institutions as well.
With the iTunes U app for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch, those barriers no longer exist. Students anywhere can take an entire course with complete access to all course materials right at their fingertips. With the iTunes U app, students are able to access new books right from within the app, and any notes taken in iBooks® are consolidated for easy reviewing.
Jump the break to view Apple’s press release on iTunes U for iOS. iTunes U for iOS is available here.
According to Apple, iTunes U has had more than 600 million downloads since it first launched in 2007. What’s even more impressive is that they’ve had more than 300 million in the last year alone — a testament to the growing popularity of the service.
Currently, iTunes U boasts more than 1,000 universities with active accounts. Schools contributing to the program range from big to small and include some of the world’s most prestigious institutions like Harvard, MIT, Cambridge, Oxford, University of Melbourne and University of Tokyo.
Apple’s iTunes U service — a collection of learning material that includes research, lectures, and more — may not be as popular as other consumer-oriented iTunes products like TV shows and apps, but it’s undoubtedly one of the company’s finest resources for education. Apple also confirmed 30% of iTunes U traffic comes from iOS devices — I wouldn’t be surprised to know the iPad helped rising mobile traffic since last year. And, 60% of iTunes U users are outside the United States.