If you own a library card, you can use the Libby App to download thousands of free ebooks and audiobooks…
I don’t often describe an app as a game changer. But that is exactly what the Libby app is – if you’re an avid reader. If you are, Libby is perhaps one of the coolest apps you’ll hear about this year.
I spend an ungodly amount of money with Amazon through its Audible and Kindle services. Like over $100 a month easily.
I get a lot of benefit out of it, obviously, but $100 a month on audiobooks and Kindle is still $100 a could be saving and putting to better use elsewhere, so when I heard about Libby my interest was immediately piqued.
Get Free AudioBooks on iPhone & Android
Audiobooks are DAMN expensive. Normally, I only ever use my free credit with Audible but this can be problematic, especially if you download a title that is only a few hours long.
To get around this, I tend to ONLY ever download Audible titles that are 20+ hours long which, understandably, kind of limits what I can listen to – mostly biographies and history books.
About a week ago, I was putting together a list or 2021’s most essential apps for iPhone (spoiler: you can download that list by signing up to our email via the pop-up) and I had reached out to some friends for recommendations. Libby kept coming up, so I decided to check it out.
What is Libby App?
The Libby app is essentially a digital library. If you own a library card, which every adult should, then you can use the Libby App to download and consume thousands of ebooks and audiobooks for free.
All of the content on Libby is sourced from America’s public libraries. The app is powered by OverDrive, a technology platform that is used by over 90% of public libraries in the USA.
OverDrive is the leading digital reading platform for libraries and schools worldwide. We are dedicated to creating “a world enlightened by reading” by delivering the industry’s largest catalog of ebooks, audiobooks and other digital media to a growing network of 65,000 libraries and schools in 84 countries.OVERDRIVE
You will need an active library card to use the Libby app, however, and if you don’t have one, you can apply for a library card here. And trust me, when you see what Libby can do, you will most definitely want to get yourself a library card.
How Does Libby App Work?
Libby works as an app that download onto your Android or iPhone. It’s free, and you can get it inside the App Store or Google Play. Once you’ve downloaded the Libby app, you’ll be asked to sign in and scan your library card.
Once you’ve done this, you can start downloading and consuming audiobooks and ebooks via the app.
And that’s basically it – the app is really simple to use and is easy to navigate. You also have plenty to choose from as well – from New York Times’ best sellers to classics and everything else in between.
Libby App For Mac
Is Libby available for Mac? Yep, the Libby app is available for Macs and Apple computers running MacOS. You can download and install the Libby app here.
Can You Get Libby App In The UK?
You can get and use the Libby app in the UK, however, only about 50 UK libraries are signed-up to use OverDrive’s platform. This means UK users have way less to choose from compared to their USA-based counterparts.
This could change, however, as the app becomes more popular. But this will all hinge on the UK’s library authorities waking up to the concept and rolling it out across more of its public libraries.
Libby App & Your Kindle
One of the coolest things about the Libby app, however, is that you can send your downloaded ebooks to your Kindle. As someone that has used a Kindle for as long as I can remember, this feature is brilliant.
I’m not averse to buying a new e-reader, but I really do love my Kindle Oasis. For me, it is the ultimate reading experience. And owning one means I don’t have hundreds of books taking up valuable room in my home.
How To Send Libby eBooks To Kindle
Sending your downloaded Libby titles to Kindle is actually really simple, just follow the steps below:
- Open Libby App
- Navigate to Shelf > Loans
- Tap Read With… > Select Kindle
- You’ll Now Be Redirected To Amazon Where Your Order Will Be Completed
Another cool Libby feature that you don’t get with other apps like Borrowbox is the ability to organise all your books by tags, so you could have a tag for fiction books, a tag for history books, and a tag for biographies for instance.
This makes keeping your stash of books nice and organised a lot easier. Got more questions about Libby? Check out the FAQ below…
Looking for more? Like, wondering how to sign up for a free Chegg account?
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How Do I Use Libby Without Library Card?
You will need a library card to use Libby. If you do not have a library card, the Libby app has a helpful section where you can sign-up and apply for one. The process shouldn’t take too long either, so you should be up and running in no time.
Q: Can I Use Libby Without WiFi?
You don’t need WiFi to use Libby, the app will work just fine over 4G and 5G connections, as well as HSPA+ too – 3G might be a little slow though. You will need some form of internet connection for the app to work properly.
Q: Do All Libraries Use Libby?
Around 90% of the public libraries in the USA use OverDrive, the technology that Libby runs on, so, yes, most libraries in the United States support Libby.
Q: How Many Books Can I Borrow At A Time On Libby?
You can borrow up to 25 titles at any one time which makes Libby a great tool for anyone that is doing research, as you can get all the books you need for free.
Q: Does Libby Work In The UK?
Yes, Libby is available in the UK but so far only around 50 libraries are signed up with OverDrive. This means UK Libby users have WAY LESS selection than Libby users in the USA.
Richard Goodwin has been working as a tech journalist for over 10 years. He is the editor and owner of KnowYourMobile.