Ebooks In Overdrive and Accelerating

My spirits rose a few days ago when the new version of OverDrive Media Console for the iPhone was released. OverDrive is the service deployed by my local public library to allow online borrowing of ebooks and audio books. The OverDrive iPhone app now supports ebooks as well as audio books.

Sadly my hopes were dashed by discovering my local public library did not appear on the list of over 17,000 libraries across the world using OverDrive. It seemed every other OverDrive library in Queensland was there except mine. This meant searching and downloading ebooks via OverDrive directly on the iPhone/iPad was not possible. Gloom.

At the same time an email indicating the availability of an ebook from a hold request arrived – Charlene Li’s Open Leadership. I resorted to the tried and trusty method of using a browser on my PC to download the ebook link from OverDrive to Dropbox, switch to Dropbox on the iPad, and open the link file which happens to be in XML format. From display in Dropbox the Open in… tool allows Bluefire to download and read the ebook for the next 14 days. To my surprise OverDrive now also appears:

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Selecting OverDrive allows it to download and display the Adobe epub ebook (once you activate OverDrive with your Adobe credentials). From Overdrive we now see:

Photo Dec 11, 18 46 18 Photo Dec 11, 18 46 36

To my great delight, not only did OverDrive download the ebook but it registered the link to the Gold Coast City Council library – my library!

Now I can search and download Adobe epub ebooks directly from iPhone/iPad – heaven indeed.


About Michael Rees
Academic in IT interested in Web 2.0 and social media

6 Responses to Ebooks In Overdrive and Accelerating

  1. Peta says:

    I’ve downloaded an overdrive book using the iphone Overdrive application only – I think. Except I had to retrieve a password hint from Adobe digital editions, which I did on the netbook. And now its loading, loading, loading. Maybe it is still downloading.
    It’s not clear from the app what the status is. Will have to check later.

  2. Michael Rees says:

    I have to admit all my tests have been with the OverDrive iPhone app running on my iPad. In theory this should not make a difference.

  3. Timothy says:

    Thanks for blogging about your experience with the app, Michael. I’ve passed your comments onto the librarian who looks after our online services, as to the question of why we aren’t on the OverDrive list.

    (My activities on this blog do not represent my employer…sorry for the legalese!)

  4. Pingback: That Ebook Cinderella Moment « Scholarcast

  5. Sara says:

    I’m having great trouble getting the ebooks on my ipad. Michael says above he moved the ebook file from Overdrive to Dropbox but my ebook only shows in Adobe Digital Editions and when i try to open the epub file in Overdrive it wont work. Also I’m confused where you say you have to activate the Overdrive with the Adobe password (which I have) but I can’t see where you activate that on either adobe or overdrive. Any comments would be helpfull. Thanks

  6. Michael Rees says:

    Sara, I save the .acsm file when downloading the Adobe Epub ebook from Overdrive in the browser on my PC (or Mac) to my Dropbox folder. Then switch to the iPad in Dropbox, open the .acsm file, then Open in Bluefire. It is Bluefire that requires the Adobe account and password.

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