These examples show a handful of approaches to library mobile access. As one of the 8 steps to developing mobile access to your library look at what your colleagues are doing for inspiration.
Many more examples can be found at the informative M-Libraries page.
Please note that the analysis of the following 5 sites was carried out on 26 January 2014 and reflects their status on this date.
- CamLib Mobile Interface, Cambridge University Library http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/toolbox/camlib.html
The Cambridge Library mobile interface is accessed via a url rather than an app.
It provides four choices to the mobile user on its main interface.
- Search allows one to Search All libraries, or selected ones as listed under Libraries as well as Electronic Resources.
- Your account: Allows you to view your personal library account on login enabling you to view and renew items on loan, create, cancel and manage requests, etc.
- Libraries list various libraries by name, depart and faculty, college or affiliation. On selection, arrows lead on to opening hours, the website url, address and a clickable Find on the map opens Google Maps to pinpoint the library’s location.
- About: Provides basic information on the mobile interface service.
- University of Groningen Library App http://www.rug.nl/bibliotheek/app/?lang=en
The main interface features today and tomorrow’s open status of the library selected and the number of workstations available in real time both numerically and graphically. A refresh button below updates the number.
Libraries can be selected by clicking arrows below a black login bar.
A search button at the top right will take you to search the library’s collection across all libraries of the University.
At the base of the main interface, 3 icons allow one to send a mail to the chosen library, make a telephone call to it, or to find out where the library is located via Google Maps.
A button at the top left, takes you to another selection of services, partly duplicating what is on the main interface for navigation purposes.
- Opening Hours list the various libraries and their hours by date;
- My Loans gives access to your library account when logged in;
- News provides access to headlines of the Library’s latest news.
- Settings allow you to personalise your library app, e.g. to adjust the font size, to select your language (Dutch or English), also allowing you turn notifications on or off.
- Syracuse University App http://m.library.syr.edu/
The Syracuse University Libraries app is integrated into the University app although it is placed centrally amidst 8 other buttons.
Half of SUL’s screen is dedicated to search, which uses the library’s discovery service that searches almost all resources.
Below search, 8 icons lead on to other services:
- Hours: Takes the user to various library opening hours.
- Locations: Leads on to four sub-pages:
- Collections with information on special collection locations and the libraries that house them
- Libraries with information on their address, opening hours, floor maps and the number of study spaces on offer (not in real time)
- Spaces includes information on the study spaces and meeting rooms on offer, today’s room schedule and the location of the Library café.
- Floor maps can guide the user through certain library buildings.
- Search: requests the user to select a catalogue, database or guide before searching. Libguides can also be searched from this interface such as subject guides, course guides, general and partnership guides, guides by librarian or all guides.
- Staff directory: All library staff are listed alphabetically and can be searched. Their function, emails and tel numbers are given, and buttons will call or open a mail client to make direct contact with the Library staff member.
- Ask Us: provides the mobile user with 6 ways to communicate with the Library: Text, Chat, Phone, Checkout assistance phone, Email and Snail Mail. Links from text, chat, or phone open text, phone or chat clients to start communication immediately.
- News/Events: includes Library News as well as the Library’s Events List including short descriptions of lectures and exhibitions, including dates, times and locations.
- Give us your Feedback: provides an online form to submit comments to the Library.
- View the Full Library Site takes one on to the Syracuse Library Website.
- Library App, University of Warwick Library http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/newsandevents/interactive/mobileapps/libraryapp/
Half of the Warwick University Library app’s interface is dedicated to searching its collections, which can be chosen under Location. All locations searches the entire catalogue or else search can take place in specific resoruces ranging from e-Resources to Warwick Theses to the Modern Records Centre. Results bring up titles, author and year, with small thumbnail images if Show Book Covers is activated on the main interface.
Below search, 6 buttons take one on to 6 further information services.
Opening hours: provides access to the opening hours, address (incl. Google map button) and telephone number and call button to 5 libraries.
- Floor plans: navigate users to 5 floor maps of the Library.
- Classmark locations: takes the user to the physical location of classmarks at the Library linking to its floor plans.
- Available workstations: Shows users the total number of PCs available (reloaded very minute) by building, including the location’s opening hours.
- My Account: Via a login, users get access to services associated with their library account details.
- The Library Website button takes the user to a mobile optimised site, including search, access to student or staff pages, staff or visitor info.
- TU/e Library, TU/e Eindhoven University of Technology App
The mobile app for iphone is one amongst many mobile services at Eindhoven for a range of users.
The main mobile interface allows the user to search the catalogue by keyword, title or author. A small barcode icon next to the search box provides searching via QR code or library bar code. At the base of the main interface, 5 icons take the user on to more services:
- Search takes the mobile user back to search.
- Results brings the user to his/her recent search results.
- Favorites: gets you to titles bookmarked from previous search results.
- Library takes you on to
- News items from the Library
- Floor Plans of the Library
- Contact gives the user the choice between directly emailing the Library (opening an email client) to a general email address and calling them directly.
- My info provides the library user with access to his/her Current loans, reservations, loan history and open charges. Under Preferences, the user can enter their ID and pin code to change how loan history is displayed.
TU/e also has physical consoles in its library to allow those without smart phones to access library services via the app.