Free E-Books Downloadable via Smart Phones

People in waiting rooms at four Morris County government locations and a homeless shelter will soon be able to access the county library’s e-book collection on their smart phones and tablets. The “pop-up libraries” will be located at the Morris County Jail, Juvenile Detention Center, Youth Shelter, Family Justice Center, and Homeless Solutions Shelter.

Morris County Library invested $13,000 in small mobile devices using innovative technology provided by Baker & Taylor publishing company. It is the first library system in New Jersey to employ pop-up libraries, which can be employed even by those who do not have county library cards.

“The idea of bringing the books to the people, instead of the other way around, is the best way to foster a lifelong love of reading while emphasizing the social need for public library services,” said Morris County Library’s assistant director, Darren O’Neill.

Visitors in waiting rooms can access e-books within approximately 40 feet of the mobile device, which is about the size of a deck of playing cards and generates its own Wi-Fi signal. Once connected, smart phone users can visit the catalog and download e-content. It can be saved in the user’s cache for access away from the pop-up library device for about two weeks.

People in waiting rooms at four Morris County government locations and a homeless shelter will soon be able to access the county library’s e-book collection on their smart phones and tablets. (Photo provided by the County of Morris)

For security reasons, the Wi-Fi signal generated by the device can only access the website for e-content; it cannot connect to any other site. About 335 titles in English and Spanish will be offered initially, and e-content will be refreshed periodically. Visitors without smart phones or tablets can borrow one of 10 easy-to-use Kindle Fires that were purchased for on-site use at the five pop-up library locations.

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