On April 30, 2024, Crafty Birds by Kristy Conlin became the four billionth title checked out through OverDrive and our award-winning apps, Libby and Sora. This achievement is a testament to the librarians and educators who champion digital reading every day (as well as that patron at Calgary Public Library who checked the title out!).

The very first library checkout of an ebook through OverDrive occurred in 2003 and it took four years to reach the first million in 2007 and another five to reach 100 million in 2012.  As libraries’ support for digital reading grew, OverDrive’s all-time checkouts reached 1 billion checkouts in March 2018. By December 2020, digital checkouts through OverDrive – and Libby and Sora – surpassed 2 billion. Within two years, that number had reached 3 billion 

 Thanks to your commitment and dedication, checkouts have now surpassed 4 billion. More people than ever are discovering the joy of borrowing ebooks, audiobooks, magazines, comics from your digital library and we are grateful to serve all the users who benefit from access to digital content. 

Public libraries drive community engagement through innovation and inspiration

An important driver of the four billion digital book checkout achievement are local library initiatives that focus on raising awareness and increasing engagement within their communities. A few examples of these initiatives: 

As we look ahead to the next billion, we will continue our mission of creating an inclusive and accessible reading experience for all as we support the 92,000 libraries, schools, colleges, and organizations in 115 countries who use digital content to reach more of their communities. 

About the author: Jill Grunenwald is a Marketing & Communications Specialist on the North America Public Library Marketing Team. A former librarian, she joined OverDrive in 2015. Outside of the office she can be found writing, hanging out with her cats, collecting more Tarot decks than she has room for, and playing competitive pinball. Her favorite genre is something she calls “Murder at an educational institution that involves a close-knit group of suspicious characters.”