Monday, January 30, 2023

Check out these upgrades at the Virginia Beach Public Library

The Virginia Beach Public Library is refreshing its technology offerings, including new early literacy devices, upgraded 3-D printing services and the addition of wireless internet hotspots available for checkout:

Early Literacy iPads

The library has replaced AWE Early Literacy Stations in the children’s areas of its branches with iPads that are preloaded with 20 educational apps, according to a news release from the city.

The preloaded apps support early literacy skills such as reading, writing, speaking and playing, and introduce science and technology concepts. Ideal for children ages 2 to 6 years, the iPads are now available in the children’s areas of the branches for in-library use on a first come, first served basis.

Funding for the Early Literacy iPads was provided by a $14,324 grant from the Friends of the Virginia Beach Public Library.

3-D Printing

It’s also is upgrading and expanding its free, 3-D printing services. Patrons with a VBPL card have access to free 3-D printing at Virginia Beach’s Meyera E. Oberndorf Central Library and the TCC/City Joint-Use Library.

Those locations are adding new MakerBot Replicator+ printers this month and will each have two printers in operation until the four-year-old models currently in use reach the end of their capacity. New MakerBot Replicator+ 3-D printers are expected to be added at the Great Neck and Bayside & Special Services branches by fall 2018. For more details on the service, visit VBPL’s 3-D printing page.

Wifi Hotspots

Wireless internet hotspots is now available at Central Library, with a rollout to all branch locations expected later in 2018.

Patrons may place holds on the devices and pick them up at any Virginia Beach Public Library location. An initial 11 devices will be available during the pilot at Central Library.

A young library-goer uses an Early Literacy iPad at Windsor Woods Area Library. (Virginia Beach Public Library)

By the end of 2018, 110 hotspots will be available throughout the library system. This service will be especially useful for those who have no internet access at home, and for families and professionals who are on the go and have a need to access the internet for work, school or connecting with friends and family.

The hotspots are the latest item offered as part of VBPL’s Take Home Tech collection.

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