Apr 14, 2006)
Hamilton Public Library's virtual bookshelf now holds 500 e-audiobook titles, free to borrow and easy to download. The new products are offered in partnership with Digital Library Reserve, Inc., an Ohio-based technology vendor and use Windows Media Player to play files.
Following the success of the products in large American library systems like New York City, Hamilton is leading the way in Ontario as the first public library system to launch an e-audiobook collection.
Hamilton Public Library serves a community of 500,000 and has a popular virtual library (www.hpl.ca
) that is the third-busiest branch in the 25-branch system. E-audio products will have special appeal for Hamilton commuters, joggers, students and anyone who enjoys listening to great books on portable devices. The e-audiobook collection includes bestselling titles by Stuart Woods and Nora Roberts, popular biographies, business books and language learning sessions for people on the go.
"We're delighted to be the first public library system in the province to offer these products," said Kit Darling, director of the library's information technology. "Library card holders can browse, checkout, and download digital audiobooks at their convenience. They can essentially take their library books anywhere a portable device can go. Digital audio is the new standard, replacing limited formats like books on cassettes and CDs. Best of all, the titles are easy to borrow, easy to return, and there are no late fees."