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Thursday, 30th December 2010

OverDrive's E-Book Service Experiencing a Boom in Traffic and Downloads

We're not suprised to read the following OverDrive blog post. Why? Here are four reasons.

1. If you follow the OverDrive Twitter stream you might have noticed several tweets from users about the service being slow. The company noted that downloads were booming and they're working to add more bandwidth.

2. In the past four to eighy weeks we've noticed a significant increase in the amount of mainstream media attention about e-books accessible from libraries (free) has been receiving. A number of the articles that we've read make specific mention of OverDrive. Btw, these stories are about new libraries adding e-book access or an intro to what has been available for some period of time.

3. The introduction of enhanced mobile apps allowing iPhone and Android users the ability to download e-books directly to mobile devices.

4. The success of e-book reader sales during the 2010 holiday buying period. More e-book readers, more users, more bandwidth, more downloads.

From a Digital Library Blog (OverDrive's blog) Post:

For the first time ever, eBooks out-circulated audiobooks at libraries’ ‘Virtual Branch’ websites. Audiobooks are still very popular and increasing in circulation, but this momentum for eBook downloads shows that the format has gone mainstream at libraries.

Library eBook circulation has steadily grown over the past month, starting on Nov. 26, the day after the US Thanksgiving holiday. (Like Christmas, many people had new devices, thanks to Black Friday deals, plus they had time to use them.)

To show you what happened in one month, we’ve compared usage from Nov. 26-28 (around US Thanksgiving) to Dec. 25-27 (around Christmas).

+ eBook checkouts increased a staggering 93%
+ Visits to ‘Virtual Branch’ websites were up 60%
+ Pageviews were up nearly 70%

We'll be watching OverDrive closely to see how the company is handling the increase in usage. We will also be watching to see if other e-book services from libraries have seen (or will soon notice) a rapid increase in usage.














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