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From the press release:

Baker & Taylor, the world’s largest distributor of physical and digital books, and Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS), the world’s largest bookseller, announced at the American Library Association Annual Conference that the companies will partner to build awareness among NOOK customers that digital books are available for loan from local libraries, and to provide all library patrons with a seamless method for borrowing eBooks and other digital content. The highly acclaimed, bestselling line of NOOK ereaders will be featured devices on Axis 360, Baker & Taylor’s revolutionary digital media circulation and management platform. …

Starting this fall, patrons at Axis 360-powered libraries will be able to check out ebooks to read on their personal NOOK devices. From Axis 360, patrons will also have a link to the Barnes & Noble online store for purchasing digital content and physical products.

Libraries, readers and NOOK customers will find Axis 360 offers several key benefits, including ease of use, intuitive search and browse and reading recommendations. Built on state-of-the-art technology, Axis 360 showcases the digital library collection on a Magic Wall and makes it quick and easy for patrons to check out the titles they want. Starting this fall, librarians and patrons at Axis 360-powered libraries will also have access to EPUB and spoken word audio titles, as well as a patron reviews module that will allow users to contribute book reviews and assign star ratings to titles to be shared within a library system or with other Axis 360 participating libraries.


  1. I wonder why money-challenged libraries would want to invest money into an ebook distribution system that serves ONLY B&N Nook device owners? I don’t get it? Many libraries already are using Overdrive vendor to distribute EPUB ebooks which can be used by a large number of readers and devices (including the Nook) and soon will also include a Kindle format.

  2. I also wondered by my local library was going with a new e-book service provider rather than an established provider. Overdrive only recently started providing access to ebooks in Kindle format. Since I have worked in the tech field for over 20 I know that new services take many months to work out the “bugs” in the system as no vendor has the ability to duplicate all of the conditions required to optimally deliver electronic media to an end-user’s device due to the many variables involved (device, software, network connectivity, computer device is connected to, etc.) so I contacted my local library and asked that same question. The library rep stated that they had considered OverDrive but they had spoken to other libraries and had been told that OverDrive had very little competition which has allowed them to raise prices once a library was established with their service. By going with the B&T e-book services my local library believes they will be able to get better pricing on e-books allowing them to purchase more books.

    Regarding Kindle readable book formats, a better question would be why do Amazon e-reader devices not support epub format which is a common standard for the industry. By using a proprietary format Amazon is forcing their customers to purchase e-books from their company. Other e-readers support the e-pub format so you can purchase an e-book in e-pub format from whatever vendor provides it and read it on that device.

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