So my library is offering Hoopla & Kanopy. Kanopy is another streamer. Not as sure what Hoopla is and what I can get out of it.
I will take a stab at this. My Lincoln, Nebraska public libraries first offered Hoopla as a source to download books and audio books. I used it regularly for books, not audio books. They later added Libby, which also lets you download books and audio books (it offers other stuff, which I have not dabbled in).
Once I got used to using Libby, I tapered off of Hoopla, although I still occasionally will download a book on Hoopla.
I found Hoopla to be less intuitive than Libby, it’s search function was more awkward and less definable and it limited me to 4 checkouts at a time (Libby allows me 10). So look and see if your library has a second option such as Libby. If it does, try it first. I think it is a matter of Hoopla being older and so it is just not as smooth or user friendly.
When Hoopla was all I had it worked fine to allow me to download and read ebooks for free. I could adjust the font, the lighting, the margins, the type size, etc., which helped with my vision difficulties after a head injury. It keeps track of where you left off and reopens where you last were but will allow you to go forward or back as well. I enjoyed it just fine until something new and shinier was offered by my library.
It may be that each library purchases a system of Hoopla that is customizable to them so what your Hoopla offers may differ. Mine offers ebooks fiction and non-fiction, audio books, movies, music, comics and television. Since answering your question led me to open up my Hoopla app and poke around, now I am going to go back and check out some movies and television to help pass time in these stuck at home because of Covid endless weeks, so I thank you.
And please forgive me for answering a question you didn’t ask. My mind is like that.
Short answer: sure, Hoopla is great. Also see if your library offers newer shinier apps too, like Libby, that does more and is easier to use. Then use both, what the heck?
Thank you very much. It does have Libby, I managed to check out a Popular Science yesterday and check it back in today.
The description says “Libby is your link to more than 500 magazines and so much more!”
I’ll play with that some more.
I use Overdrive for library ebooks (I belong to several different library systems across the country). The libraries also offer Libby as an interface, but I personally find Overdrive to be more intuitive. I haven’t used Hoopla. Does it offer a different selection of available materials?
I guess I’ll continue the tangential answers. I haven’t used Hoopla, but I formerly used Overdrive and now use Libby after my library made it the preferred interface. I prefer Libby. I find it easy to use.
I don’t know how much of this is the app and how much is my library, but I really like Hold shelf. I can put a book on hold but postpone delivery from a few days up to 6 months. Once I reach the front of the hold line, I stay in the top spot until I’m ready to check it out, so I can avoid long pauses of no books mixed with everything landing at once.
I also like its feature that syncs up my reading progress between devices. I usually read on a tablet, but occasionally I’ll be out and about with time to kill, so I can pull up the book on my phone and it will open to wherever I left off on my tablet.
Everything s/he said goes for me too.
I have also used Overdrive but now use Libby more often for the same reasons: easier to use because it is newer and more intuitive by my tech-daft elderly self. I’ve been a reader 60 years longer than I’ve been a computer interfacer/user. I can say that about myself, other younger whippersnappers can’t call me old or tech-daft.
My library’s subscription allows 8 checkouts per calendar month. I mostly use it for streaming movies and downloading audiobooks to my phone for my commute. Check out automatically expire after 21 days.
They also have eBooks, but I’m old fashioned and prefer dead trees in my hands for reading.
I sometimes use it for streaming music. It’s good for lesser known artists - they’ve got The Interrupters complete catalog. It’s great for previewing an album to decide if you later want to buy the whole thing or just a few songs.
The movie selection is erratic. Lots and lots of crap you’ve never heard of, like the straight-to-video stuff that clogged up the shelves in mom-and-pop video stores back in the day, and a handful of great art house films. The movie selection also changes month-to-month, with films appearing and disappearing. (About a year ago they had all the Cheech and Chong movies. I started watching in order to get a high school nostalgia fix. Not a great idea. Up in Smoke did not age well at all. After I watched Next Movie (better), all of them disappeared from the service)
For audiobooks, you need to download the app onto your device. You can then stream, or download for offline use later.
Hoopla has this feature as well. I’ve started watching a movie on my laptop, paused and switched to my phone with no problem.
Kanopy is great for independent films. Unfortunately my library stopped supporting Kanopy a couple years ago and they don’t offer Hoopla either.
Yes, my district library utilizes Hoopla, Libby & RB Digital.
I’m completely satisfied with the selections, check out times and list keeping. Watching Wolf Hall and reading Queen of Vaudeville on Hoopla. RB has magazines galore. Libby I cross reference for content I can’t find on Hoopla and vice versa.
Add to that DL offering is Freegal, a music streaming service with 5 downloads available per week. I absolutely adore this app. I use it more during summer listening on wifi speaker outside. And on road trips using Bluetooth to stream my play list. Great service
I’ve been using Hoopla to work my way through the old Route 66 TV show. There are a couple of other streaming services that carry the show, but Hoopla is the only one (AFAIK) that offers them commercial-free. The movie selection, as others have observed, is a bit uneven, but gems do turn up occasionally.
Hoopla’s music selection is fantastic. I’m a classical music guy and I have found tons of great stuff there. I’ve also taken advantage of their audiobook selection for long car trips.
I’ve rarely used Hoopla for ebooks. I prefer to read on a Kindle e-reader, and they don’t support that, so I use Overdrive instead.
Hoopla titles are always available, whereas with Libby/Overdrive (they are the same service, just the app was rebranded as Libby) you might have to wait for a copy to become available. So if you’re an “I want to look and check out an ebook/audiobook right now” type of person, Hoopla is great. In Libby you can set the preferences to show you just what’s available now though.
Hoopla should have ebooks, audiobooks, streaming music, movies/TV and graphic novels - no magazines, and all with various lending periods so make sure you pay attention to that. You’re also most likely limited to a certain number of checkouts per month, so use them wisely. You don’t want to run out too early in the month.
Hoopla tends to have many nonfiction books that library systems might not buy as an ebook for Libby/Overdrive. Lots of cookbooks, for instance.