28 October 2013

eBooks - a step by step guide to borrowing for tablets


Family group using tablet devices
At the ACT Digital Hub we have been taking people through the process of borrowing library eBooks from Libraries ACT. If you would like to make an appointment to talk about eBooks and tablet devices contact 6140 4990 or digitalhub(at)act.gov.au.

This guide is written to step you through the process of borrowing eBooks or eAudio from the Libraries ACT collection on your tablet. For a guide on how to do this for eReaders (they the help of a computer to download eBooks) there will be another post coming soon.

Step 1 - Device compatibility

You will need a compatible device. Check the list of compatible devices to see if yours will talk to Libraries ACT.

Step 2 - Account information


  • You will need an email address so you can obtain an Adobe ID - it's free
  • You will also need to know your library membership number and PIN
  • Your compatible device needs to be connected to the internet (3G or Wi-fi is fine)

Step 3 - Set up 

Set up Overdrive on your device


  1. Overdrive’ is a program that communicates between your device and the library – you must have this on your device in order to borrow from Libraries ACT.
  2. Go to your device’s app store and search for ‘Overdrive’
  3. Download the Overdrive app
  4. Once installed, open the app 

Set up an Adobe ID


  1. Open Overdrive on your device. 
  2. Go to settings, found by pressing the three horizontal lines in the top left-hand corner.
  3. Select Authorise underneath the information about Adobe® Authorization.
  4. Select 'Get a free Adobe ID'
  5. Fill out all sections of the online form, make sure you provide a valid email address and type in your  password correctly.  Note: If you have an Adobe ID, enter in the email address and password you registered with
  6. Once an Adobe login has been obtained, login with the email address and password you entered.  It will tell you if you have logged in successfully.

Set up your Library

You now need to tell your Overdrive app which library you are a member of:

  1. Tap the three-horizontal bars in the top left-hand corner
  2. Tap Add a library
  3. Tap Browse libraries
  4. Select the country / state / region of where your library is situated.  Libraries ACT can be found by selecting Australia, ACT, ACT Library and Information Service
  5. Select ACT Library and Information Service
  6. You should then see the Libraries ACT logo and the home page for ebooks supplied by Libraries ACT.

Step 4 – Meet the eCatalogue

Get to know the Libraries ACT eCollections home page. You can also access this page by typing http://ebooks.library.act.gov.au into your browser.

  1. eBooks (print) are indicated by a book icon in the top right hand corner of the book. An icon is a little picture
  2. eAudios are shown by a headphones icon
  3. Available items – icons are shaded black
  4. Unavailable items – icons are shaded grey
  5. You can request items that are unavailable
  6. In the process of requesting material, you will need to give our e-catalogue your email address and we will contact you when it is available to download
  7. Once notification has been sent, you will only have five (5) days to download the item
  8. Just like a real paper library, where one book can be borrowed by one person, only one person can borrow an e-book at a time.  Some titles may have multiple copies, so several people can borrow that title

Step 5 – Download your book

Now that you are familiar with the eCatalogue you are ready to pick the item you want to borrow.

  1. Select an available item
  2. Select Borrow
  3. Enter your Library card number and PIN then select Sign In
  4. You will then see a screen showing all of the items you have currently checked out.
  5. Select Download and it will download to your device
You can select View in Browser.  This means you can view it over the internet and you always need to be connected to the internet to read it.  Downloading the item enables you to read it whenever you want.

Step 6 – Read your book

Once your items have downloaded, it will tell you how long you will have the item for. Items will typically appear in your Bookshelf. You will see images of the items you have downloaded.  There is a limit of 10 items at any one time. Just select the item by tapping its image to start reading.