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British company brings school libraries to iPad and Android tablets

by Doug Drinkwater

January 16 2012

MLS now allows iPad and Android tablet owners to access library content
MLS now allows iPad and Android tablet owners to access library content

Micro Librarian Systems (MLS) is a provider of library management systems for education and exhibited at the BETT education show in London recently, where it revealed that its cloud-based system now allows smartphones and tablets to access school libraries.

The firm has a history of delivering content management systems to schools, offering access to books, DVDs and website, but is now working with Birmingham-based company Overdrive to offer eBooks.

MLS’ content management system has a simple, but attractive layout and demos at the exhibition showed that users can view their loan items, check their reserved content and write reviews. Content is uploaded to the CMS by librarians, who simply input the ISPN and scan the barcode. The data is input by a third-party company.

MLS has a surprisingly big database of clients and claims that its CMS system is being used by 50% of UK secondary schools. A similar system has been adopted by 10,000 primary schools.  Although most of its business is UK-based, Micro Librarian Systems has implemented its CMS at schools in Malaysia and Germany.

In terms of cost, the CMS costs £3,500 (approximately $5,350) to set-up (including hosting) and another £515 ($785) per year (excluding hosting). The iOS and Android apps are free to download, while MLS says that it is still in the process of bringing Windows Phone and RIM BlackBerry apps to market.

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