While the iTunes Store has thousands of free mobile apps, the pickings are comparatively slim when it comes to free e-books from the iBooks Store. But while Apple doesn’t have a free e-book Tuesday, like it does for songs, I have found a selection of reads that MUO readers might be interested in.
I’ve chosen full-length techy related books, although there are several hundred pages of free iBooks to download to the iBooks Reader– from trashy sex novels to hundreds of sampler books.
iPhone and iPad Guides
If you’ve just got your new iPhone or iPad and you want to get a complete overview of all the features and how to use them, the iBooks Store has two full-length, each over 200 pages, official guides for free download: The iPhone User Guide, and the iPad User Guide for iOS 5.
Both books are well illustrated with step-by-step instructions. While these guides may not contain the tips and tricks you will find here on MUO, they are definitely two good starter guides that you should have in your iBooks library.
The leading Apple magazine, Macworld, has also released one of its guides for free – the iPhone 4S Starter Guide – which covers every feature on the device, from the Home button, to setting up Mail, Contacts, iCal, iCloud, to a review of accessories including cases, headphones, and speakers.
This is a 23-page guide on how to use the Siri app on the iPhone 4S. While the guide is not illustrated, it does include lots of examples of verbal commands you can use with the voice activation app.
While I haven’t had a chance to read this book, the topic looks interesting. Journalist Peter Olsthoorn examines the power and possible dangers of Google’s data collection reach and how you can combat it in your personal life.
It also takes a critical look at Google’s advertising machine, censorship, social network failures, and privacy guidelines.
For more lighter reading, Apple has just released an iTunes exclusive, The Beatles Yellow Submarine, which features clips from the movie and Beatles songs, and awesome illustrations.
Young readers can use iBook’s audio feature to have the story read to them. The formatting of this iBook book does not fill the entire iPad screen, so it may feel a little awkward to many readers.
Geek Mom is a quirky collection of fun projects for the tech-savvy parent. The author shows you how to put together a Motherboard PCB Bracelet, cook Geek Cupcakes, create a Lego USB Stick, make a wallet from a computer keyboard, and over a dozen more projects.
If you’re into Batman, Superman, Captain America, and the like, you might be interested in Superheroes: The Best of Philosophy and Pop Culture. Written by William Irwin, the book explores such weighty questions as, “Why doesn’t Batman just kill the Joker and end everyone’s misery? Does Peter Parker have a good life? What can Iron Man teach us about the role of technology in society?”
Superheroes gets into deep philosophical questions and analysis, with references to classical intellectual thinkers like Aristotle and Kant. If you can wrap your head around this type of thinking, Superheroes might be worth your time.
The best way to browse the free books available in the iTunes Store is through the the iTunes application on your computer whereby you can click from page to page of book covers. Also check out MUO’s large and growing collection of free PDF guides that focus on similar topics, from Using iOS 5 to BAM!: Your Guide to Digital Comic Books.
Can you recommend any other good free books for the iPad and iPhone?