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ABDO announces digital solutions program, Instant Access

Harnessing the power of QR Codes for instant eBook accessibility

November 24, 2014 • Minneapolis, MN

ABDO (abdopublishing.com), a leading educational publisher, announced last week the debut of their innovative Instant Access program, which touts a new solution for libraries to improve the discoverability and accessibility of digital assets for library patrons.

In speaking with school librarians across the country, ABDO has heard loud and clear that both discoverability and accessibility are two very real challenges libraries face with patrons on a daily basis.

“We first realized over the summer that Instant Access was something we had to make happen, and soon,” says Editor-in-Chief Paul Abdo. By October, things had come together enough that the company was ready to launch the program and decided to share preliminary information with several of the country’s leading school librarians at the School Library Journal Summit in St. Paul, MN.

The feedback was resoundingly positive, with the program’s concept being described by the librarians as “a beautiful thing.” Abdo continues, “We are so pleased to present this program to libraries—to be able to offer a real-world solution that positively affects librarians’ role and their patrons’ experience on a daily basis.”

ABDO is the first publisher to come out with a program designed to help market digital assets in a physical library. By offering a Scan-to-Read QR Code Label as part of the company’s shelf-ready processing options, librarians can implement the ABDO Instant Access program without doing any extra work on their end. Direct promotions are available to make purchasing digital content more affordable, and ABDO is the sole source provider of Scan-to-Read QR Code Labels.

The user experience is also simple, applied in three easy steps. First, a user sources a title of interest at the library. Perhaps it’s the physical book on the shelf, or perhaps it’s a poster on which the librarian has affixed a variety of Scan-to-Read Labels. Second, the user scans the label with his or her mobile device. All they need is a QR Code scanner app, many of which are free to download. Third, the eBook version of the title opens instantly on the app’s browser and reading can begin, no login necessary. The eBook itself isn’t downloaded to the device—saving storage space—however, the URL is cached so that the book can be accessed again, any time.

Instant Access accomplishes several things. First and most directly, it applies QR Code technology to improve the librarian’s ability to tangibly market digital titles with a physical label. Titles are still cataloged in an OPAC, but patrons do not need to access and search the OPAC in order to see what titles are available as eBooks. Second, the program works to eliminate the equality gap that often accompanies the integration of digital content in libraries—for example, communities that do not have the resources to go 1:1 or individual students who do not own their own tablets but still have access to smartphones can just as easily discover and access eBooks that have been set up with Instant Access Scan-to-Read QR Code Labels.

About ABDO

ABDO, a family-owned company, has been publishing educational materials for more than 30 years, including library bound hardcover editions and a variety of digital products. The company is comprised of five divisions: Abdo Publishing, Magic Wagon, Spotlight, Abdo Kids, and Abdo Digital. For more information, visit ABDO online at abdopublishing.com.

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