At ten, national e-book platform offers 7,200 titles
Biblos, the largest Slovenian platform for buying and borrowing e-books, is celebrating its tenth anniversary. Launched by the publisher Beletrina in 2013, it currently offers 7,200 book titles.
Most of the platform's e-books are in Slovenian and are available to all members of the 62 libraries that are part of the Biblos network. The e-books are not locked to a specific format or vendor and can be read on smartphones, tablets, computers and e-readers.
The platform had around 38,000 users as of the end of 2022, after gaining in popularity during the Covid-19 pandemic. Even after the pandemic, the interest in e-books does not seem to be waning; some 240,000 books were borrowed last year, compared to just 12,000 in 2014.
The platform is also popular with Slovenians abroad. Mojca Mark, founder of the American online book club We Read in Slovenian, says that Slovenian books are not available in the US, so they are happy to be able to read Slovenian books through Biblos.
Through the project iBiblos the platform is also linked to libraries in the Croatian Istria and the Osijek General Library. More than 1,300 titles in Croatian were available last year with the readers borrowing the e-books 2,100 times.
In November 2022, Slovenian school libraries joined the sBiblos system, which offers e-books for children in grades 6-9 and for high school students. The sBiblos platform was created in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and offers 188 book titles. Some 2,000 e-books were borrowed in the first two months of the platform's lunch alone.
One of the platform's advantages is that there are no late fees. Each user can borrow a maximum of four e-books for a period of two weeks, and they are automatically returned once the two weeks are up.