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iPads and Penguins--UPDATED 2/16

[UPDATE: From the "Why didn't I catch that" department, note that the text for the Kindle-format ebook in the second image, the Harlan Coben entry, reads "Kindle and Kindle free apps via USB only." This language is inaccurate: if you see "via USB only" on any such entry, it cannot be downloaded to the Kindle app. We have contacted Overdrive about this language and they are "looking into it."

Another part of this update: if you are on hold for a Penguin ebook (The Help, for instance) and you are planning to read it on a Kindle app, because of Penguin's recent decisions to eliminate wifi access to its ebooks, you will not be able to get that hold. And because holds are format-specific, your hold will not allow you to check out the ePub format ebook via the Overdrive app. If you think this is going to affect you, check your holds in the Overdrive page and see if a title has the "via USB only" language on the record. If not, you're golden. If so, call us.

Again, this only relates to people using Kindle apps to read ebooks published by Penguin.]


As you may have read on the website's front page, publisher Penguin has decided to end its contract with our ebook/audiobook provider Overdrive, and part of this change means that our existing Penguin ebooks have to be downloaded via USB cable for Kindle owners only.

There is a special problem for tablet users who prefer to read library ebooks via the Kindle app, as opposed to the Overdrive app, due to special features the Kindle app has. Two things:

  1. Overdrive is updating its apps to include some of those features, like a dictionary, etc, which is why many people preferred the Kindle app over the Overdrive app.
    • Unfortunately for iPad/iPhone/iPod owners, the updates for your app haven't been completed yet.
    • For Android, Blackberry and Windows Phone, the apps have been updated.
  2. You cannot transfer ebooks to a tablet device via USB, so you cannot use the Kindle app to read Penguin ebooks.

So, note the difference between these two following entries from the Overdrive page:


The above entry will work with the Kindle apps. No worries. The following entry is a Penguin title and must be downloaded via USB.


The problem here is, if you check this title and try to transfer it to your tablet device, you will receive the following message:

"Due to publisher restrictions, this book cannot be delivered wirelessly and must be downloaded and transfer via USB. You currently have no devices registered that support transferring via USB."

What's more, the title is not added to your "Manage your Kindle" page, so you cannot return it early. You cannot go back and checkout the Overdrive version.

If you run into this problem, call the Popular Materials desk (440)250-5462. The staff member who handles Overdrive support will try to get the item cleared off your account.

We apologize for the introduction of this level of confusion into the ebook process. These changes were imposed by the publisher, and we are forced to live with them. 




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