This week the Android-powered Kindle eReader gets a massive bump as Amazon's library ebook lending scheme is initiated at over 11,000 libraries across the United States. Through this program, libraries will be offering ebooks for checkout for periods of time similar to what a normal book checkout would be. This will more than likely also boost physical library attendance as folks with the Kindle hardware will be encouraged to actually visit the locations to pick up the ebooks. This program is also working starting today on Android apps for devices of all types.
Users will need to get themselves a brand new library card, (or they can use the one they've already got, if they've got one,) and each library will be responsible for handling their own loans. Delivery will take place via Whispernet, Amazon's wireless system, this system only working over a Wi-fi connection, not 3G. Users may also initiate book checking out via USB connection. Should users choose to purchase books during or after their check-out period, notes and bookmarks added to borrowed copies will be transferred to the purchased copies automatically.
This entire system uses OverDrive for its DRM and lending, and each loan period will depend entirely on what individual libraries have deemed appropriate. While current OverDrive implementations range from 7-21 days, loan periods could have any number of instances in the future through this program. And don't worry about forgetting to return your books on time - a three days left notification will pop up on your Kindle whenever the time is near.
Late fees! Never again!