As public libraries continue to see expanding interest in loans of e-books, the need to integrate this service into their online catalogs becomes critical. The May 2012 issue of Smart Libraries Newsletter reported on work underway at Polaris Library Systems and 3M Library Systems to develop an e-book lending service fully integrated into the Polaris PowerPAC and Mobile PAC online catalog interfaces. This integration would allow library patrons to not only more easily discover, check-out, and download e-books, but to also view and manage both print and online loans through their library account. To facilitate technical processing, MARC records are automatically added to the library's catalog as they are purchased from the 3M Cloud Library without the need for batch loads. Circulation reports generated by Polaris will include activity related to both physical and electronic books.
Work on the integrated service has come to fruition, going into production at the Baltimore County Public Library in Maryland in December 2012. The 3M Cloud Library, a relative newcomer to the library e-book arena, was launched in the Baltimore Public Library in August 2012.