Beginning Monday, Nov. 23, Delaware County District Library patrons will be able to check out and take home a mobile hotspot just as easily as they would a book or DVD, library officials say.
The hotspots will provide Internet access to users in almost any location.
Mobile hotspots are small, portable devices that provide wireless Internet access for any device that can connect to a wireless signal, such as a laptop, smartphone, tablet or gaming device. Mobile hotspots typically use mobile broadband service from cellular providers for 3G or 4G Internet access.
The library has purchased 25 of these hotspots, which will provide coverage to a small amount of users anywhere there are T-Mobile towers in the nation. At this point, Delaware County is almost 100 percent covered.
“This service for our patrons has applications across the entire spectrum. Offhand I can think of quite a few instances where this would be beneficial,” said district IT manager Traci Higgins. “Individuals without wireless in their homes would have access for homework or research. People who have moved and are awaiting services could use this in the meantime. If a family is heading on vacation, the kids could use it in the car while they travel, and then it could be used at the vacation spot if there is no Wi-Fi.”
To check out a device, patrons must be over 18 and in good standing with the library, officials said. Hotspots can be checked out for up to two weeks and will offer unlimited data usage during that time.
They may not be renewed, and there will be no late fees on them. However, once the loan period is up, the device will be deactivated and the full replacement cost of the hotspot, the cords and the case will be billed to the patron’s account. Upon return of the device, the charge will be removed.
The devices have a one-time purchase cost of $70, and an ongoing monthly cost of $29 for unlimited Wi-Fi services, according to library officials.
For more information, visit the district’s website at www.delawarelibrary.org or contact Nicole Fowles, communications manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 740-362-3861.
Information for this story was provided by the Delaware County District Library.