St. Paul, MN – March 8, 2012 – 3M Library Systems and Polaris Library Systems announce a strategic partnership that will make browsing and checking out eBooks simpler than ever. The 3M Cloud Library eBook Lending Service will now be integrated with the Polaris Integrated Library System (ILS), allowing patrons at participating libraries to discover both physical and digital collections from wherever they are browsing—the library's own public access catalog (PAC) or from the 3M Cloud Library applications. The new partnership will be showcased at the Public Library Association 2012 Conference, beginning on March 13 in Philadelphia, Pa.
This first-of-its-kind integration between an ILS and eBook service will bring added convenience to library patrons, who will now be able to browse and check out both physical books and eBooks from one unified interface. The system will also enable unified account profiles, where users will be able to view status updates or receive notifications for all of their materials—both physical and digital. Additionally, with the integrated system, statistics on 3M eBooks will be collected in real time and included in circulation reports—a valuable asset for librarians.
"Libraries and patrons have been asking for a simpler way to incorporate eBooks into their catalogs, and we are proud to be a leader in answering that need," said Matt Tempelis, global business manager, 3M Cloud Library. "This integration will notably improve the patron experience, as well as the library's ability to gather circulation data. We are excited about this partnership and our ongoing work to connect patrons to library collections."
The added ease-of-use for Polaris libraries and their patrons builds on the 3M Cloud Library's already well-established convenience and simplicity. By providing both digital content and in-library hardware, along with apps for borrowing and reading, the 3M Cloud Library offers a turnkey system for digital reading. Patrons can view content on a 3M eReader that they check out from the library, or can access the system on their own devices with an easy-to-install app (currently available on Android, iOS, and PC platforms). With Polaris integration, the 3M Cloud Library apps now will allow the patron to view and place holds on physical materials as well as easily check out and read popular eBook titles.
Getting started is easy, as the 3M Cloud Library app does not require an Adobe ID, and lets patrons simply select their library and enter their library card number to gain access to the system and start reading. Unlike some competitive systems, 3M Cloud Library doesn't ask for detailed information from patrons such as name and email address and it doesn't require an additional password. All that is needed to begin browsing and reading is a valid library card number in good standing.
"The integration between 3M and Polaris finally provides libraries and patrons with a solution that really works for each of them," said Steven Nielsen, vice president of product management, Polaris Library Systems. "For the first time, library patrons will no longer have to leave the library catalog to get their eBooks, and the library will remain the main source for all of these materials."
The 3M Cloud Library service is currently in use at 10 beta sites across the country. In April, general release installations will be performed for 30 additional library systems. Patrons of these libraries will gain access to content from a growing list of more than 40 publishers, with content offerings totaling well over 100,000 titles.
As a leading innovator in the eBook lending industry, 3M supports the philosophy that libraries should own their content after purchase. 3M has designed the Cloud Library system to serve as a digital distributor of content, and supports library eBook license ownership after the sale. If a library wishes to terminate their relationship with 3M and move to a new platform provider, 3M will not restrict the library from transferring their eBook licenses to a new platform. 3M has also eliminated the need for a lengthy multi-year service agreement, with a newly released terms and conditions agreement that allows customers to renew their subscription without committing to a long term contract.
The system will be demonstrated at the PLA 2012 Conference at both the 3M Library Systems booth, number 204, and the Polaris Library Systems booth, number 1223. For more information about the 3M Cloud Library eLending system, visit 3M.com/Cloud.
About 3M Library Systems
3M Library Systems is the only company that develops, designs, and manufactures cutting-edge digital media, circulation management and security solutions. Finding the technology solution that is right for our customers, 3M's promise is to deliver a long term partnership that is built to exceed their expectations. For more information about 3M Library Systems, visit http://www.3m.com/library or follow @3MLibrary on Twitter.
3M captures the spark of new ideas and transforms them into thousands of ingenious products. Our culture of creative collaboration inspires a never-ending stream of powerful technologies that make life better. 3M is the innovation company that never stops inventing. With $30 billion in sales, 3M employs 84,000 people worldwide and has operations in more than 65 countries. For more information, visit www.3M.com or follow @3MNews on Twitter.
About Polaris Library Systems
Polaris Library Systems' mission is to help libraries better serve their communities. Through its work with almost 2,000 libraries across the U.S. and Canada, Polaris has come to understand the challenges and opportunities that librarians and their users face. The company designs products and services to help public, private and academic libraries surmount these challenges and lead productive, bright futures. For more information about Polaris Library Systems, visit www.polarislibrary.com.