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Learn the basics for OverDrive ebooks

Library patrons have lots of questions about using the ebooks in the Digital Download Center (aka OverDrive). Public services staff, here are answers to some of those questions!

How do the ebooks work?

We've captured the whole process on video:

  

If you prefer words and screen shots, read up on downloading an ebook and transferring an ebook to an ebook reader.

Do I need an ebook reader or special software to use ebooks?

The ebooks in the Digital Download Center can be used on a PC or Mac with Adobe Digital Editions, even if you do not plan to transfer them to an ebook reader. Adobe Digital Editions is a free program, separate from Adobe Reader or Acrobat, and it should be installed on your computer before you download your first ebook from the Digital Download Center. If you decide to use an ebook reader, you will also need to authorize Adobe Digital Editions with a free Adobe ID and activate the ebook reader with it too.

If I get an ebook reader, which ones work with the library's ebooks?

OverDrive maintains a list of which formats work with which ebook readers at the Device Resource Center. There is also a handy, printable cheat sheet (pdf) that shows some of the more popular supported ebook readers. Unfortunately, the Amazon Kindle is not compatible with the formats in our collection.

Can I try it on a computer at the library?

We're sorry, but currently ebooks cannot be downloaded to library patron computers.

That's a lot to remember. Can you write it all down in case I forget?

Here's another printable handout with all the steps (pdf). It has an ebook how-to guide on one side, and mobile device steps on the other in case you want to try EPUB ebooks on your Android or Apple device. It may also be helpful to write down the URL of the Digital Download Center on the handout: http://dbooks.wplc.info/.

It would be so convenient to download stuff directly to my phone. How does that work?

The OverDrive Media Console apps for Android and iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch can download EPUB ebooks and MP3 audiobooks directly to the device. You can get them from the iPhone App Store, Android Market, or online from OverDrive. Unfortunately, WMA audiobooks and PDF ebooks can't be downloaded directly with these apps. Apps are also available for Blackberry and Windows Mobile, but these don't support ebooks (see the entire list of platforms and format restrictions).

Here's a video of what the app looks like (demonstrated using an iPad):

 

What if I need help?

For self-help, try the Help section of the Digital Download Center or our OverDrive FAQ wiki.

For support, contact your local library, or submit an online support request.

Comments

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This is fantastic! Thanks Rose!

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