High schools in Maine are to get 6,000 iBooks.

The deal nearly fell through after Maine's education department failed to sign up enough schools to the programme. Apple was offering 8,400 laptops but has agreed to drop the minimum laptop requirement to 6,000.

The laptops will be leased for an annual rent of $300. This is the same price Apple is charging Maine for laptops in its 242 middle schools. The price includes servers and repairs, and Apple also will provide training and assist in installing the wireless networks that link the computers.

According to Education commissioner Susan Gendron, 35 to 40 of the state's 119 high schools will take part.