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Posts Tagged ‘Wi-Fi hotspots’

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Wi-Fi Lending: Balancing Supply and Demand

Wi-Fi lending is a growing trend across public libraries in the United States. Gwinnett County Public Library in Georgia joined the ranks this year. The fifteen-library system in Georgia began lending ‘Connect Gwinnett’ Wi-Fi kits. The kits include a T-Mobile 4G LTE wireless hotspot, USB cable, and wall charger. Libraries are uniquely positioned to add Wi-Fi lending because they are eligible for generous lower-cost data plans as nonprofit entities. Many libraries across the country are adding this service, including New York, Chicago, Kansas City, Brooklyn and St. Paul.

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Check Out a Library Hotspot

If you are a library patron lacking Internet in your home, have no fear—many public libraries across the country are teaming up with cell phone providers like Sprint and Verizon to offer library hotspots for checkout. These hotspot devices can be checked out for an allotted period of time designated by participating public libraries. Unsure about what a hotspot is? Well, the Chicago Public Library has defined a library Wi-Fi hotspot as “a device you can use to connect a mobile-enabled device, such as a laptop, smartphone or tablet, to the Internet. The hotspot is portable, so you can connect your device almost wherever you are, like at home, on the bus or in the park.”[1] In a world filled with endless technology, public libraries once again prove that they can continue being relevant in a world deeply embedded in a technological revolution that once “threatened” to put public libraries out of business for good.

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Narrowing the Digital Divide: New York Public Library Loans Out Hotspots

The New York Public Library, along with the City of New York, is bringing low-income New Yorkers out of the “digital dark” with free internet access at home. The New York Public Library, partnering with Sprint, decided to improve access for its patrons by lending out hotspots, which are essentially mobile devices that transmit a wireless signal