The hardest part about being an avid reader is sometimes you simply can’t resist reading a book. Even if you only stuck the outstanding books or the best sellers every week, that’s still a lot of books to be read (TBR). And the money in your wallet only gets you so far. But there’s good news – if you know the best library apps to download, you can still build an impressive TBR list without going bankrupt.
The NBL Mobile (National Library Board Singapore) is a free mobile library that caters to your whole family. Parents and grandparents, even bored kids can find lots to do for free – with plenty of books, magazines, textbooks and niche periodicals at the tip of your fingertips.
What Does This App Do?
This library app lets you take your reading on the go, no matter where you are. You can read ebooks and listen to audiobooks and discover new digital resources. You can also manage your library account and your family’s accounts. If you’re in Singapore, you can reserve and borrow physical library items as well.
Through the National Library Board (NLB), users have access to over 13,000 courses. The topics range from software development, leadership, marketing, sales, programming, IT, and more. There is even an online learning platform, Udemy Business, offering thousands of courses on crucial soft skills and technical topics like how and where to invest in real estate.
How Some Benefit From the App
Ben Fox founded his website Shepard back in 2020 at the start of the pandemic with a few goals in mind – to help people discover excellent books as if wandering through your favorite book store. His site includes little notes from the author pointing out their favorite books.
Fox personally uses a mobile library and enjoys it very much.
“My family and I are addicted to our mobile library, and we have easily saved 1,000 dollars over the last few years using it,” Fox said. “At first, we were just using it for ebooks and were shocked when we learned that it also has music, audiobooks, movies, and magazines.”
Fox talks about how he reads a lot of science fiction and just finished the Gridlinked series by Neal Asher.
“It is great for my son as we can grab ebooks for him all summer,” Fox said. “I tell everyone about it as I don’t think libraries make it clear how amazing these apps are.”
How to Download the App
To update or download the NLB Mobile app, go to the Google Play Store or Apple App Store.
- Tap this link if you are using a mobile device to view this page, or
- Scan the QR code below with your mobile device.
Read eBooks Even When You’re Offline
Some of the cool features we discovered with this app is that you can read eBooks even when you are offline. With the Libby app, you can download eBooks and Audiobooks to your device, so you don’t need an internet connection to read or listen to them later.
However, you can read online with the NLB Mobile app if you are always connected. Titles you borrow on Libby will appear on your NLB Mobile app and vice versa.
These are the devices that are currently compatible with the NLB Mobile app:
Kindle : Currently, Kindle is not supported.
Kobo : Yes, you can access NLB’s eBooks directly if you have any of the following models:
- Kobo Nia,
- Kobo Libra H2O,
- Kobo Forma,
- Kobo Aura ONE,
- Kobo Aura Edition 2,
- Kobo Aura H2O Edition 2, or
- Kobo Clara HD devices.
Check out this step-by-step guide on how to use the Kobo device here.
NLB Login: What’s Available on The NLB Mobile app
Before you can use any of the functions, you have to:
1) Own a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet with an internet connection
2) Have an NLB myLibrary ID and
3) Download and sign in to the NLB mobile app
Easy Steps to Borrow
When you want to borrow a title, you go to the eReads screen and follow the steps below:
- Select book title
- Launch your NLB Mobile app and tap the camera icon at the top left corner
- Scan the QR code displayed and borrow the eBook/audiobook title
Please refer to the Libby guide if you want to read or listen offline.