Downloading of eBooks and audiobooks from mobile devices increased exponentially from 2010 to 2011. In fact, the number of downloads in 2011, thus far, is 13X greater than that of all of 2010.

As mobile usage continues to soar, OverDrive is committed to maximizing the mobile user experience. Based on feedback from libraries, I am pleased to share that the following new features that are now available at your library’s website on a mobile device:

  • Patron-defined lending allows patrons to choose their lending period for each title. Example options include 7, 14, or 21 days. Note: This feature is only enabled if your library currently offers this option at the desktop site.
  • Advanced search functionality gives your patrons the opportunity to search by criteria such as title, author, keyword, publisher, format, etc. for a more custom set of results.
  • Enhanced searching allows your patron to search within results to narrow down a list of titles, and additionally, limit the results to only show titles with copies available. This means no more scrolling through dozens of pages to find a title available for checkout.
  • Page numbers in search results gives patrons a clear view of how many titles were generated in their search or
    browse.

We hope your patrons enjoy these new features!

Shannon Lichty is manager of library partner services for OverDrive.

27 Responses to “Now available: New features for the mobile experience”

  1. Virginia

    If there is a way to browse only titles with copies available, it’ll be very helpful. Sometimes you’re just looking for something to read, and don’t really have anything specific to search for. Thanks.

  2. Janet Ryan

    This is fantastic! Folks will LOVE being able to limit to copies available, and to choose their checkout period. I’m so glad the mobile site is adding features to me more like the desktop experience.

  3. Sean

    I work for a library system in WA state and just checked out the advanced search on my Android device. It’s great to see it available.

    Why doesn’t it allow me to limit by format “Kindle Book?”

    It is only allowing EPUB and MP3. I’ve got the Kindle app on my Android phone. To get Kindle books directly on my phone, without using a PC, I’m going to have to continue to an alternate browser on the phone for which I’ve modified the user agent so that I can view the full OverDrive Downloads page from my library.

    Please add “Kindle Books” as an option for filtering on the Advanced Search on the mobile page.

    Thanks.

    • Brianne Carlon

      Hi Sean, we are glad you like the updates! At this time, however, Kindle books cannot be downloaded directly on iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, or Windows phones. As a result, users will not be able to browse or checkout Kindle books on iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, or Windows phones. -Brianne

  4. Kathryn

    when will you get Overdrive compatible with Apple mobile devices iOs5? It’s incredibly frustrating to be locked out of downloading audiobooks from my library now.

    • Brianne Carlon

      Hi Kathryn: Regarding the issue of WMA files not showing up on an Apple device following the update to iOS 5, users can now update OverDrive Media Console for Windows (http://www.overdrive.com/software/omc) to resolve the issue. Once you have transferred a WMA Audiobook to your device, a playlist will be created for the Audiobook. Please note that WMA Audiobooks will no longer be listed in ‘Audiobooks’ on your iOS5 device. This solution will work in the absence of a patch from Apple that would allow WMA titles to be named properly and stored under Audiobooks on a device using iOS5. Hope this helps! -Brianne

  5. Jim D

    You are probably aware of this but iTunes latest version (I’m running 10.5.0.142) seems to have a glitch with the console, which can’t find my Apple device through this version of iTunes. Thanks for such a great product; I’ve been using the console for almost two years and it has been effective and fairly easy to use.

  6. Barbara Henry

    Can you speak to the Overdrive WMA audiobook problem with iOS 5? Has that been resolved? I am waiting to update to iOS 5 on my iPod because I don’t want to mess up using WMA audios downloads via ODMC. Most audios are in WMA format.

    • Brianne Carlon

      Hi Barbara, Regarding the issue of WMA files not showing up on an Apple device following the update to iOS 5, you can now update OverDrive Media Console for Windows (http://www.overdrive.com/software/omc) to resolve the issue. Once you have transferred a WMA Audiobook to your device, a playlist will be created for the Audiobook. Please note that WMA Audiobooks will no longer be listed in ‘Audiobooks’ on your iOS5 device. This solution will work in the absence of a patch from Apple that would allow WMA titles to be named properly and stored under Audiobooks on a device using iOS5. Thanks! -Brianne

  7. kyla

    Is this new mobile version just for Apple or is there a new version for Android and BB as well? Just want to be able to tell our patrons to upgrade so they can have the improved searching capabilities. Previously we were telling them to search the regular site because it was so cumbersome and then connect to download & read on their device.

    Very happy to see this!

    • Brianne Carlon

      Hi Kyla, the new version is for all OverDrive apps! -Brianne

  8. Roger Lovelock

    The playlist solution is totally inadequate as my place in the audiobook is no longer stored and I have major hassles restarting listening to the audio book. Why can’t Overdrive Media Console convert a WMA file to an Apple audiobook format (m4b I think)when transferring. In Australia probably over 50% of Overdrive users would be using iPhones or iPod Touches – Audible don’t have this problem! Basically I can no longer use audiobooks from Overdrive/my local library and must buy from audible instead.

  9. ahmad

    hi, does anyone knows when the audiobooks are going to be able to be in the audiobook section on my iphone running IOS 5? someone is mentioning about a missing patch from apple? when is that going to happen?

    • Brianne Carlon

      Hi Jodi, the Kindle only supports library eBooks at this time. -Brianne

  10. Roger Lovelock

    Further info – I discovered that the playlist does in fact keep your position (this can be set manually in iTunes) – but only if you only have one audiobook in use. I have two audiobooks on the go on my ipod touch – one for me to listen to and one for my wife. As soon as I switch from one to another I lose my place in the first audiobook – the place was kept correctly in multiple wma audiobooks previously. Is there a workaround for this please?

    • Brianne Carlon

      Roger, I will forward your issue to OverDrive’s support team. Thank you for letting us know. -Brianne

  11. Lora

    I just bought a Kindle Fire hoping to get away from the glitches after upgrading my iPod Touch to ios5. I was told by Best Buy that I would be able to listen to audiobooks through WMA files from Overdrive. I find this to not be true. I also cannot transfer books from the Neibors site like I can on my iPod Touch. Will these services be available in the near future? If not, Best Buy will get my Kindle Fire back. Thanks for any assistance you can provide.

    • Brianne Carlon

      Hello Lora, the Kindle Fire does not support WMA files from any supplier. This is not an OverDrive issue but a manufacturing decision by Amazon. I hope this helps. -Brianne

  12. Roger Lovelock

    Hi,
    Have just had an update to Itunes – seems to transfer OK – I transferred a WMA book – then deleted the playlist and the book appeared OK under Audiobooks. Didn’t work for the second book I tried – does the ‘fix’ to Media Console need removing now?
    Roger

  13. Ros

    Why not allow the checking out and “download for kindle” option for books from the mobile website. I want to be able to do this so I can get the book to amazon so I can then download it to my kindle via wifi. At the moment I can only do this from the regular overdrive site not the mobile site. Very annoying! It means I can’t borrow a book when I am away from home

    • Brianne Carlon

      At this time, Kindle books cannot be downloaded directly on iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, or Windows phones. As a result, users will not be able to browse or checkout Kindle books on iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, or Windows phones as Amazon cannot support the library loan feature on their mobile website.

  14. Mark McNeil

    H like being able to download audiobooks directly from my local library to my iphone but unfortunately it doesn’t remember my exact place. It always starts about 15-20 minutes before where I left off the last time. Then I have to ry and get it to the exact spot using the scroll since there is no fast forward. It would be great if this could be fixed. I have an iphone 4 with iOS 6 running on it.

    • Michael Lovett

      Thanks for the suggestion, Mark. I’ll pass it on to our dev team! -Mike

  15. Richard

    PLEASE UNDERSTAND: I know, Kindle books must be downloaded from the Amazon website!

    However, the Overdrive mobile website for smartphones (iPhone, Android etc.) does not offer search for Kindle books (Kindle books are not an option in the format search field). What is the reason for this? There are many customers who want to search for and read Kindle books on their smart phone.

    The Overdrive App also does not offer a search option for Kindle format. This is a recent change, within the last year. Having the search capability in the app or at the mobile website is convenient and useful.

    • Michael Lovett

      Hi Richard- Thanks for your feedback. We’re working with Amazon to make Kindle checkout available via the OMC apps. We’ll keep you posted. Best, Mike

  16. Jeff Dodd

    @michael, kindle search and checkout support need not be part of the app. Just allow us the same access on the mobile version of the site via safari that we get from a computer. I’ll manage to get the kindle book on my kindle or kindle for iPhone like I always do. It’s a silly restriction of functionality on your website.