SimplyE

Increase Usage of Your Ebooks and Audiobooks
Amigos Library Services is a hosting provider for the SimplyE app, which combines titles from multiple ebook and audiobook providers into a single, easy-to-use list for your patrons. Browsing, searching, and downloading is simple, without the complication of Adobe IDs for your patrons.

 

 

Funded in part by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services through a grant to the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, Grant Number COP-20001 (2020)

Institute of Museum and Library Services logoTexas State Library & Archives Commission logo

Built by libraries for libraries, SimplyE is an easy-to-use app, available for both iOS and Android devices, that makes it easier for patrons to read library ebooks and listen to audiobooks. Currently, the primary audience is public libraries, but related projects are in the works.

Amigos Library Services was one of the first consortia to become involved in the development of this service, and now is also a hosting provider for libraries that cannot, or prefer not, to host SimplyE themselves. Contact us for more information about hosting.

The app is available in both the Apple Store and Google Play store and includes a collection of freely-available ebook titles. Try it out!

  • Discover Ebooks & Audiobooks
    SimplyE is a discovery service for your ebooks and audiobooks. It displays titles from different aggregators and publishers in a single patron interface. They can read an ebook or listen to an audiobook within 3 clicks. A public library in your pocket!
  • Borrow with Ease
    Tired of DRM and multiple customer log-in methods? In SimplyE, enter your library card number and PIN just once and start reading and listening for free. No patron frustration with Adobe IDs.
  • Simply Read & Listen
    SimplyE uses the next generation of eBook technology and digital rights management (DRM) technology to make reading on your phone or tablet simple and convenient.
  • Privacy
    Patron privacy is built-in to SimplyE. Vendors will not be able to see which patrons have checked out which titles.
  • Accessibility
    Accessibility is a high priority for this project, both for ebooks and audiobooks. The reading software is based on Readium, a highly accessible epub reader. The audiobook player was built with accessibility in mind and should work with assistive technologies, including screen-readers like TalkBack (Android) and VoiceOver (iOS).
  • Open Source
    Built with maximum use of open source software, open specifications and standards-based technologies, SimplyE was initially developed by the New York Public Library using funds from the Institute for Museum and Library Services. Other organizations, such as Minitex, Califa, Lyrasis, and Amigos Library Services, now aid in this development and others are always welcome.

  • Patrons use only one app instead of a different app for each e-resource provider.
  • Library staff can teach and support a single app instead of many.
  • No need for patrons to set up their Adobe ID for each e-resource provider.
  • Accessibility is central to this app's functionality.
  • What patrons read is kept private.
  • Increases libraries’ return on investment, as patrons find and read titles that had not before been discovered.
  • Libraries can now subscribe to multiple providers, knowing that their frontline staff will be supporting a single app.
  • Development of the app is library-driven with input taken continuously by a library advisory group.
  • Because of its open source roots, libraries can choose to implement the service themselves or use a hosting organization.

Patron Use

  • Patron searches or browses for a title using the metadata and cover art hosted on the Amigos servers
  • When a title is found, a patron clicks on the "Get" or "Listen" button
  • Patron is then authenticated with the e-resource vendor
  • If authenticated, SimplyE requests the title from the vendor
  • The ebook is downloaded to the patron’s device using the SimplyE app
  • Patron opens and reads or listens to the title

Configuration

  • A library collects information about authentication and contacts their ebook and audiobook providers for specific information about their collections.
  • Using this information, Amigos Library Services creates a profile on the SimplyE administration site. Metadata and cover art from the providers are then downloaded to Amigos servers.
  • The library and Amigos test authentication within the SimplyE environment.
  • The library’s name is added to the app for testing purposes.
  • When ready, the library's name is added to the public SimplyE app and the library publicizes the SimplyE service to their patrons.
  • Ebook and audiobook titles continue to be updated as in the vendor's collections.

Amigos Library Services configures, implements, and supports libraries that would like to use SimplyE.

The number and types of ebook and audiobook vendors that are currently integrated with the SimplyE app is constantly growing. As of July 2019, the vendors include:

  • Baker & Taylor's Axis360 ebooks and audiobooks
  • Biblioboard
  • Bibliotheca's Cloud Library ebooks and audiobooks
  • DPLA Exchange
  • Califa's enki
  • EBSCO's Novelist
  • Odilo
  • Overdrive ebooks
  • Plympton
  • Project Gutenberg
  • RBDigital ebooks and audiobooks
  • Unglue.it

The E-Read Texas program will bring electronic book (e-book) access to Texans served by small community libraries using the SimplyE app. This project brings together four major partners: the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, Amigos Library Services, Biblionix, and the Digital Public Library of America.

For E-Read Texas libraries:

For information on SimplyE, email SimplyE@amigos.org.
For information on the E-Read Texas project, email Danielle Plumer, TSLAC