Libby vs. Overdrive: Which App To Use?

For months, we’ve been urging our patrons to download and read books using Libby and Overdrive while the doors of our library are closed. While many users are familiar with using the apps, many of you may not know WHY there are two separate apps for the same reading purposes. Today we are here to explain the basics!

What is the difference between Libby and the OverDrive app?

Libby is a new app released by OverDrive. It has the same collection of titles as the OverDrive app – it’s just a different way to access the same digital library collection. Libby is a fast and attractive digital browsing experience. Here are some features unique to Libby:

  • Simple, step-by-step on-boarding the first time you open the app
  • Loans and holds are automatically added to your Shelf (from all your libraries), so you can easily find all your books in one place
  • Start reading immediately after you borrow; no need to choose a file format
  • See your at-a-glance progress through each book on your Shelf
  • Navigate easily between your Shelf and your library’s catalog
  • Add, remove, and rename cards from all your libraries in one place
  • Use tags to categorize books however you’d like
  • Set browsing and list preferences to show only the content you’re interested in

OverDrive is the “classic” app, and is compatible with more devices, including Kindle Fire, Macs, PCs, and Windows mobile devices. It also allows for transfer to MP3 players from computers. 

Which app should I use? 

If you use one iOS or Android device to browse, download, and read or listen to digital books, we recommend trying Libby. It’s a great one-device experience.

If you like to read books on many devices, or prefer to browse for new titles on your computer, stick with the OverDrive app for now. Also, if you make use of accessibility features in the OverDrive app, you’ll need to stick with that until more accessibility features get added to Libby.

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