Portable devices- libraries trying to meet the demands of the iPhone generation


  • Lisa Sara Anderson
  • Jonathan Andrews




ebooks, mobile phones, electronic resources


This paper presents a study of portable digital devices that was undertaken by Library Services at the University of Birmingham. The project team systematically examined a number of portable devices ranging from e-book readers to smart-phones to investigate how accessible services and resources provided by the library were on these devices. A number of limitations and restrictions were found that related to IPR and other issues rather than their size. The team also surveyed University members to find out which devices they currently use and how they use them. The results to this contradicted previously made assumptions regarding internet use by students, and have proved useful for planning future library services and developments. The paper also demonstrates the cost effectiveness of running small tests on devices, and how for a small amount of money a library can find key information about its own users, a group who may be very different to those of other institutions.

Author Biographies

Lisa Sara Anderson

Lisa Anderson is the Subject Advisor for Law, Archaeology and Antiquity as well as being chair of the New Technologies Group for Library Services at the University of Birmingham. Email: l.anderson@bham.ac.uk

Jonathan Andrews

Jonathan Andrews is acting Subject Advisor for Medicine and is involved with a number of ebook projects for Library Services at the University of Birmingham.






Research Articles