Apple, others challenged to make digital textbooks a reality in five years.

Apple. along with a number of tech industry leaders, took part in a discussion on Thursday to explore how a joint effort backed by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission and Department of Education can implement digital textbooks in the nation’s K-12 public schools.

Hosted by FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, the meeting fleshed out to transition all U.S. K-12 schools to a fully digital interactive learning environment within the next five years.

Attendees included representatives from tech heavyweights Apple, Samsung, Intel and Kno; publishers Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, McGraw-Hill, News Corp. and Pearson; telecoms Sprint and T-Mobile; and governmental bodies the LEAD Commission and the Idaho Department of Education, among others.

Chairman Genachowski and Secreatary Duncan issued the group a challenge to develop a low-cost, high quality solution for interactive digital textbooks consisting of device, content, connectivity, and technical support for use in America’s classrooms.