Library staff members have fieldedmany questions regarding e-book readers recently, so I thought I would share some general information about them. The devices continue to get cheaper and better.
Models feature dictionaries and allow readers to vary the font size. All readers allow downloading books from library websites.
Readers with E-ink look much like a printed book page. They are lighter and can be read outside in the sunlight, and have a long battery life. These readers are used primarily for reading books.
Readers with LCD displays offer more functions like Internet and e-mail access. They are usually heavier and are more like reading a computer screen. The weight and screen may seem to be a minor consideration unless someone reads for several hours. Glare can be a problem when reading outside, but it can be read with minimal light source. The LED screens can be bigger, provide touch navigation, and offer color for reading magazines and children's books. Many offer audio features as well.
Now many libraries, including EVLD, offer books that can be downloaded for free from the libraries' websites, so reader owners do not have to purchase every book. The borrowing process requires downloading software to a computer.
Colorado Library Consortium offers instructions for specific readers on its website - www.clicweb.org. At the site, just click on "sample patron instructions" for instructions on various readers. One choice from Douglas County Libraries shows a You Tube video on downloading books.
EVLD patrons can choose one-week, two-week or three-week check-out periods for a downloaded book. Access to the book will be denied at the end of the check-out period. Titles can be placed on hold, and you will be notified via e-mail when the book is available for check-out.
The December issue of "Consumer Reports" provides a more in-depth article, rating specific models of the e-book readers. One can access this issue at your local EVLD library or via computer on the "Consumer Reports" database at www.evld.org.
When choosing an e-book reader, consider if it will be used primarily for reading. Is accessing Internet or running apps an important priority? Weight and battery life may be considerations. Keyboard versus touch screen may be important. Current prices range from $79 to $250.
Please call the library if you have questions. We may not be familiar with each reader, but we'll help you find help downloading e-books.