Recently Apress representatives reached me out and asked what do I think about new product called “Apress Access”. As I have quite several Apress books on my bookshelf, I was interested and agreed to have have a look and share my thoughts.
In nutshell: “Apress Access” is an subscription that you buy for a year. You get a full access to most Apress books for that year. The only exceptions are those titles that are too old to be formatted for Apress’ reader and books that have not been fully published. For those of us who buy/read 4-6 Apress technical books, it could be a good option to explore. You can find more details over here.
My personal thoughts and observations are below.
- There is one huge advantage of this model. Instead of buying one or several books you get an access to an entire Apress library. And there are many good books in the Apress library. In addition to access to books relative to your immediate interest area, you can explore other technical areas for the same price. That means you can learn more 🙂
- The books are available via a web-based Apress reader. It works on both workstations and portable devices. The reader has all basic functionality. You may learn more from the this Apress video.
- As of now, to read books you need internet access. This may not be too convenient if you would like to read books while you are traveling (e.g. via air)
- Apress Access uses its own reader, so you cannot use some of the devices you are using to read a book at the moment. For example, you will not be able to use your Kindle reader to view these files.
- In my opinion, the Apress Access reader may not be that convenient to use on small devices like a smart phone. However, who really reads books on a smart phone? 🙂 I should mention that the reader works well on a tablet.
To summarize: I think some of us may find the Apress Access subscription model a very attractive option that allows access to a very good library of the technical books. I am sure that there will be others who are used to other ways of reading books and therefore this option will not be that convenient for them. There will be people who will use both traditional and the subscription models at the same time. In any case I am glad to see that Apress team are innovative and think about providing more options for accessing great technical content.
I would be interested what do you think about this option. Please feel free to leave a comment.