Annotation support in iBooks


Q: Does the iPad eBook app allow for highlighting, marking, and/or adding notes and annotations to books? I haven’t seen anything on this. This would make a big difference for me.

– John

A: It is unclear at this time if the iBooks application is going to support any kind of annotation features. Apple has not provided any kind of detail on the features that will be found in the iBooks application, however it’s worth noting that the ePUB format itself does not presently support annotations. This doesn’t, however, mean that Apple could not add their own proprietary method of handling annotations.

It’s also worth noting that it appears the iBooks app will be a separate download from the App Store. This makes it possible for Apple to easily add new features and capabilities to the app through a normal App Store update in the future, rather than requiring a complete iPad OS update.

Lastly, keep in mind that the iPad will support all existing iPhone OS applications, meaning apps such as Stanza, eReader and Amazon’s Kindle reader should run on the iPad out of the gate, and we may even see iPad-specific versions of these apps. Some of these applications do provide support for highlighting, marking, notes and annotations, so even if the iBooks app does not provide this capability right away, there are other options available.


Jesse Hollington

Jesse Hollington was a Senior Editor at iLounge. He's written about Apple technology for nearly a decade and had been covering the industry since the early days of iLounge. In his role at iLounge, he provided daily news coverage, wrote and edited features and reviews, and was responsible for the overall quality of the site's content.