Amazon's textbook push with the Kindle DX will kick off not only with a publisher partnership but in a headline-grabbing real-world trial at six partner universities. However according to information from one university exec, only around 300 students will be given the 9.7-inch E Ink Kindle DX to try out - and that's the number across all of the institutions, not at each.
The six participating universities are Case Western, Princeton, Reed College, Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia, Arizona State University and Pace, and it was Geoff Brackett of the latter that broke the DX news. Provost and executive VP of academic affairs, Brackett told AllThingsD's Peter Kafka that just fifty Pace students will get a Kindle DX in the coming fall, likely paid for by the university and Amazon, and that the other schools will deploy similar numbers.
It's not been finalized, but it looks like students will be expected to pay for their textbooks on the Kindle DX - at least, for those classes in which the texts are available - which raises the question of who will keep the e-reader at the end of the trial. If it's the universities, then we'd imagine there'd be some expectation that the students would get some money back, similar to how they might sell on second-hand textbooks at the end of a class. For more on the Kindle DX, check our liveblog coverage.
Hands-on with Amazon's Kindle DX: