The easiest way to get ebooks on to your device with OPDS

Libreture's OPDS feature helps you browse and download your ebooks on a range of compatible devices.

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Update: We just launched Send to Device, a new features that works with services like Send to Kindle to deliver your Libreture ebooks to your reading device.

How the heck do you get independent ebooks onto your e-reader?!

We know. We’ve been there. It’s easy to click ‘Buy’ on Amazon or Kobo, and wait for the PING! that says your ebook’s loaded on your device. It’s not so easy to figure out how to transfer ebooks you’ve bought independently.

We wanted Libreture to make the process easier for you, since our aim is to help sustain the independent book industry. The more readers can buy and read their indie ebooks, the more the industry will flourish! Seems obvious.

The problem for independent ebookshops is that they don’t have the technology infrastructure of closed environments like Amazon, Google and Apple. But the good news is that the underlying technologies used by those large companies are pretty straightforward, and are usually only variations on existing standards.

That PING! that you’re listening for? That’s the sound of your User Account syncing its book listings. Your device checks to see if there's a new book in your retailer account or library. If it finds one, the device downloads it: PING!

There are a number of ways to replicate this ‘Send to Kindle’ type feature, but at Libreture we’ve stepped sideways on the issue, because there are so many users with myriad e-readers. We needed to meet everyone’s needs, not just some.

Intermodal container

You gotta have standards

We decided to use a common and accepted standard in OPDS

Standards are widely agreed and accepted ways of doing things. Take intermodal containers, for example.

The dimensions and features of these shipping containers are standardised. This means they can be carried by crane, ship, forklift, plane, and lorry. Imagine the chaos if there wasn't an agreed design, size or way of lifting and stacking them.

We didn’t want to only create a Send to Device feature, because we wouldn’t have been able to standardise it for every type of e-reader, and some readers would have been left without the ability to easily access their books. Happily, there's an accepted standard for browsing and downloading electronic publications: the Open Publication Distribution System or OPDS.

Introducing: Libreture’s OPDS feature

Libreture's OPDS feature helps you browse and download your ebooks on a range of compatible devices.

When you use OPDS, compatible software and devices can browse catalogues of publications and download them with ease. Catalogues like your Libreture library.

Quick explainer: Bookshops and services like Smashwords, The Pragmatic Bookshelf, Feedbooks and Libreture provide OPDS access to catalogues such as your library of purchased books or lists of public domain titles. Ebooks, magazines, RPGs and comics can all be accessed this way.

If you use an OPDS-compatible reading device or software, you can access your own Libreture library and easily download your ebooks to read whenever you like. To do this you need to add your personalised Libreture OPDS feed to your software or device.

All the instructions for accessing your Libreture library through OPDS are available on the OPDS Feed page. Log-in first to see your personalised feed address.

If you don’t have an OPDS compatible device or e-reading app, don’t worry! You can also download your books to your device the old-fashioned way. Take a closer look at how Libreture works for more information. Alternatively, you can find a number of e-reading apps for your phone, tablet or computer that support OPDS.

Why we think OPDS is important for Libreture

Independent publishing isn’t playing on an even pitch.

The only way to redress the balance and ensure that independent retailers, authors and publishers can get their ebooks in front of their appreciative readers is not to face the monopolies head-on, but to go around them.

If you’ve got a proprietary device such as Kindle or Kobo, you probably can’t yet access OPDS, but don’t worry, there are already programmers developing unofficial software for accessing OPDS feeds for these devices and more. Some are even building e-ink devices from scratch, that ONLY conform to industry standards.

At Libreture, we refuse to accept the status quo. We actively support retailers who respect their customers, so providing this type of easy access to your Libreture library is an obvious step. Together, we’ll change the industry one book at a time if necessary, and hopefully by offering this type of feature, we’re ensuring that fantastic authors are still able to write amazing books that we love to read.

Sign up or log in to upload your books and take advantage of our super-convenient OPDS feed.


Happy Reading,

My Library


© Banner Illustration Lindsay Grime


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