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"Just the facts" about eBook formats

March 21, 2011 | Diana S. | Comments (0)

I've been receiving a lot of questions about eBooks and downloading eBooks since the beginning of the year - especially after Christmas. Customers would ask via telephone or in person about eBooks for their sleek looking white iPad, brand spanking new Kobo, or elegant black Sony Reader. They have absolutely no patience with the procedures, or if they have actually tried to read them, they only want the highlights. 

Customers (and staff) are often puzzled about the two different formats of eBooks: EPUB; and PDF. So here are "just the facts".

Adobe® EPUB eBook

  • "Electronic Publication".
  • ePub, EPub, and epub are other spellings.
  • Apple devices are only compatible with this format. For other devices compatible with EPUB format, see Compatible Devices.
  • Need to download Adobe® Digital Editions; with iPad, need OverDrive Media Console apps from iTunes.
  • You can change the font, resize the text, or alter the size of your display and the text of the Adobe® EPUB ebook 'reflows' to fill the screen.

Adobe® PDF eBook

  • "Portable Document Format".
  • Need to download Adobe® Digital Editions.
  • There is no 'reflowing' of text with PDF - zooming in for better reading will have the text go outside your screen. You will need to scroll in order to read the entire text.
  • For devices compatible with PDF format, see Compatible Devices.

To find either the EPUB or PDF formats only, you must choose the format when searching OverDrive. This is useful since customers with Apple devices will only want to search for EPUB formats of eBooks. 

Choose a format EPUB or PDF 

Then there is always the question of if an eBook can be returned early. Adobe® eBooks may be returned early using Adobe® Digital Editions.

For more information on eBooks, check out the other resources:



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