NEWBERRY COUNTY — Newberry County library patrons can now have the Newberry County Library System where ever they go, thanks to a new app that was launched earlier this year.
“The new app reaches out to the far reaches of the Newberry community,” said Sam Ziady, director of the NCLS. “We figure it will start with the college students and people who live a good distance from the library.”
The app was created by a company in California after Ziady came across them during the American Library Association Conference.
The company develops and produces apps for public libraries.
Ethan Nikonchuk, IT manager for the NCLS, said that it seemed like it was something they would like to go for, and were excited to do it. The app was then created and launched in March.
“We have on the app a lot of what is available on the website. You can do a catalog search, search through book titles, authors, basically the same way you would pull it up on the computer,” Nikonchuk said. “Log in to your account, specific to your library card, and you can check information, put in any request, check to see if they have come in, see if you have any overdue notices, anything like that.”
The app will also take you to OverDrive and Mango Languages apps. OverDrive will give users access to the Ebook library and Mango is a language learning service.
“One service we offer, Mango Languages, is a service people can download and they can learn a foreign language for free,” Nikonchuk said.
With the Mango app, users can select a language and download courses, and use those downloaded courses even if they do not have internet access. The NCLS app will pull users right to this link and they can access the services via their library card.
Another feature of the NCLS app is book look, which allows you to know if the library has a book you are interested in reading.
“If you go anywhere there are books, like Barnes & Noble, and wonder if my public library has this book, you can just take a look at the books ISBN barcode and scan it with your phone using this feature with the app, and it will automatically search it. Then it will let you know if it is available at the library or not,” Nikonchuk said.
Since the app was launched in March, there has been an average of 24 daily downloads, with 131 downloads a month, and 795 daily uses of one of the app’s features.
Not only does the NCLS bring the library to your smart device, it also brings convenience.
“We only have two dedicated catalog search computers, one in children’s and one in the main area. Some people, from what I can tell, use it. Everybody has a smart phone or tablet. They come in here and it is easier for them to search that way,” Nikonchuk said. “Even when they may not be able to physically make it into the library, they can download the app, search in the catalog on the app.”
Anyone interested in downloading the app can search NCLS mobile in the Google Play Store or the App Store on your smart device.
Reach Andrew Wigger at 803-276-0625 ext. 1867 or on Twitter @ TheNBOnews.