The mission of libraries stands the test of time and digitalization

The public library is one of the symbols of Nordic democracy. Thanks to libraries, every citizen has an equal access to information and culture. The digital world has become a part of our everyday life and that is why libraries, too, are active on the digital sector.

The promotion of reading and equality is the essential mission of libraries. Knowledge and information are still passed on largely by reading, even though content is moving to the digital world. Apart from understanding text, the modern literacy can be seen as the ability to understand and interpret sound, image and video as well. The world around us only shapes the ways libraries fulfil their mission; a mission that remains fundamentally the same. 

Tablets have proven to be a wonderful tool for libraries to carry out their mission. They can be used to promote digital reading in its many forms and to offer digital access to those with no possibility of an own device. Hublet has made loaning tablets easy and it is now possible for library visitors to check out a tablet with their library card and PIN code.

Tablets are used when the system works

There is true demand for the devices as long as the content is relevant and the loaning process simple enough. Only in March there have been 1167 tablet loans in the 12 Hublet libraries in Helsinki so far. The average loan time is between 30 and 60 minutes. The tablets are used mostly for reading magazines and casual browsing. For the younger generation, games and videos are also popular.

Loanable tablets for library users are an essential part of the Hublet service, but it has wider applications as well. We believe that in the future, libraries will start to increasingly employ tablets in different workshops and library events. This is something we want to encourage and support. Digital education for senior citizens, language and culture education for immigrants and creative arts and media workshops are just a couple of examples of how tablets can serve as a convenient tool for libraries to carry out their mission.

Tablets in libraries TOP 5

1. Equal access to the digital world for everyone

2. Promoting digital reading

3. Digital education for senior citizens

4. Language and culture education for immigrants

5. Creative arts and media education

*The ideas were presented by the development specialist of Jönköping Regional Libraries, Annhild Ottoson.