OverDrive for Android


Android devices are available as both phones and tablets from multiple manufacturers.  They are full-color touchscreen devices, and can be used to access the web, run apps, take pictures and video, stream music, and almost anything else a computer can do.  All Android tablets have the ability to connect to Wi-Fi, and most can also be added to a cellular data plan.  When using an Android device with OverDrive, all functions can be completed within the app, though some patrons prefer to complete the search and checkout processes on a computer for the larger screen.  Please note that the navigation instructions below are based on the (older) version of OverDrive installed on the library’s tablet.  If you are using another version, there may be minor differences.  The main difference is that the new app has an all-inclusive menu button on the upper left of the screen, rather than the bottom.  Also, patrons can use an OverDrive One account in place of an Adobe ID in the newer version of the app.

Competencies for This Device


  • Turn device on and off. Know how to tell when the device is sleeping vs. powered off.
  • Adjust brightness & volume
  • Turn Wi-Fi on/off
  • Turn Bluetooth on/off
  • Turn mobile network on/off (if applicable)
  • Access the internet


  • Navigate the settings to adjust for personal preferences
  • Access Google Play (Play Store)
  • Add an email account


  • Take pictures
  • Toggle from pictures to video
  • Toggle front and rear cameras (if applicable)
  • Email pictures
  • Take a screen shot


  • Access/dismiss keyboard
  • Use shift key
  • Use numbers
  • Turn caps on/off
  • Use special characters


  • Install an app
  • Explain the difference between a browser and an app
  • How to close apps
  • Organizing apps
    • Create and move icons
    • Create folders
  • Using the OverDrive app to download, return, and navigate e-books, including bookmarks and comments.

Navigating the Android Tablet

  • Press and hold the button on the edge of the tablet near the ASUS logo to turn the tablet on or off. When turning on the tablet, press the lock icon and drag it to the unlock icon to the right. This unlocks the screen.
  • To wake the tablet from sleep, press the power button and swipe to unlock.
  • Swipe the finger left or right across screen to turn pages/switch screens.
  • To enlarge, place thumb and forefinger on the tablet surface, about an inch apart. Spread fingers apart until the desired size is reached.
  • To decrease size, place thumb and forefinger on the table surface, spread apart. Pull fingers together until desired size is reached.
  • Press the home icon at the bottom of the screen to return to the home screen from anywhere else.
  • Press the double rectangle icon at the bottom of the screen to see recently used programs. Tap the program to open it. Press and hold the program to remove it from the list or get more info about the app.
  • Press the back button at the bottom of the screen to return to the previous screen.
  • To search the tablet and the internet at the same time, tap the Google icon in the top left corner of the screen. To enter your term using voice recognition, tap the microphone icon.
  • To view installed apps, see available widgets, or to shop the app store, tap the icon in the upper right corner of the home screen. It looks like 6 small boxes.
  • To delete an app, tap the taskbar in the lower right corner. In the box that pops up, tap the icon that looks like a gear. Select “Apps” from the menu on the left. Tap the app name on the right and select “uninstall” on the next screen.
  • To open an app, tap its icon – either on the home screen or the apps menu (icon in the upper right of the home screen).
  • To exit the keyboard (undocked), tap a space away from the keyboard or the down arrow on the lower left side of the screen.
  • To exit a menu, tap a part of the screen away from the menu or tap the back icon on the bottom left of the screen.

Connecting to Wireless

Items in italics only apply to our wireless network.

  1. Tap the time in the lower right corner of the tablet.
  2. Tap the gear icon to open settings, then use the slider to turn Wi-Fi on (if it’s not already) in the left menu. If it is already on, tap Wi-Fi to select it.
  3. Tap “library” network.
  4. The network usage agreement should come up – tap “I agree.”
  5. If another screen or error message comes up, input our web address in the browser. Then, tap the OverDrive icon to prompt the wireless agreement to come up.
  6. Press home icon to proceed.
  7. Open web page to confirm.

Surfing the Internet

  • Make sure you are connected to a wireless network.
  • Tap the “Browser” or “Chrome” icon to open the web browser. If you do not see an icon, open the “app drawer” by tapping the six dot icon in the upper right of the screen.
  • Enter a web address in the box at the top of the screen. If the box is not visible, tap the browser tab (not on the “X”) or a search term in the upper right box.
  • When the box is tapped, a keyboard will appear. Up arrows are shift keys and the “.?123” button toggles the keyboard between numbers/symbols and letters. Tap the x button at the right end of the top line to backspace.
  • Use arrow keys to navigate between pages
  • Tap the bookmark icon to see bookmarks, history and saved pages.
  • Tap the plus sign next to the page name to open a new tab.
  • Please note that Flash is no longer supported by Android, so some web content may be unavailable.

Adding/Deleting an Email Account

There are two methods for receiving email on your Android device.  You can download the app from your provider (Gmail, Yahoo, etc.), or you can configure the native email client with information about your accounts.  These instructions are for the second method.

  1. Open the app drawer and tap the “email” icon.
  2. Enter your address and password.
  3. On the next screen, select your preferred options. You will need to check “sync email from this account” to keep the account up to date automatically.
  4. You can give the account a name, if you wish. You can also specify how your name is displayed on outgoing messages.
  5. To delete the account, open the email app and tap the three dots at the top right of the screen. Select settings and scroll to the bottom of the page. Tap “remove account” and confirm.

Taking a Picture or Movie

Open the apps menu by tapping the icon in the upper-right of the home screen that looks like 6 boxes in a rectangle. Tap “Camera.”

  • By default, the app opens to take a picture using the back camera. To toggle with the front camera, tap the camera icon on the outer concentric circle.
  • To take a picture, press the blue button.
  • To switch to video, tap the video camera icon on the lower right corner of the page.
  • To record, press the red button. Press again to stop recording.
  • To take a panoramic picture, tap the icon to the right of the video camera icon.
  • To start, press the green button and move the tablet slowly. If you are done panning before the camera stops, press the green button to stop.
  • In any mode, use the slider to zoom. Tap the settings icon in the outer concentric circle for more options.
  • To email a picture, press and hold the picture in the gallery. Tap the share “icon” (looks like a “less than” sign) and select your email program. The picture will automatically be attached to a new email.
  • To exit, press the bottom left of the screen. The back, home, and recent programs icons should appear.

Downloading from Google Play

  1. Open the Play Store.
  2. Tap the search icon or browse by category.
  3. Tap an app title for more information
  4. Tap “install” in the app description. If you agree to give the app the specified permissions, tap “accept.”
  5. App will be available in the “app drawer.” On most devices, this is a group of 3 or 6 dots on the home screen.

Pro tip:  If a patron is prompted to enter a credit card number when setting up the account, and they only wish to use free apps, try a number on this page:  http://www.paypalobjects.com/en_US/vhelp/paypalmanager_help/credit_card_numbers.htm. It will pass as a valid card, but will not accept any charges.

OverDrive for Android

Watch the video: http://help.overdrive.com/#videos

brochure for legacy (older) mobile devices [added 12/21/15]

brochure for mobile devices

App Setup

Steps in italics are only needed for first run.

  1. Tap the Play Store icon on the bottom of the home screen.
  2. Tap the magnifying glass icon and type “OverDrive Media Console” in the search box.
  3. Tap “Install” and then “Accept and download” on the left side of the screen. After installation, the icon will be available on a home screen as well as in the app menu.
  4. Open the app. Tap the menu icon and select “Get Books.” (If prompted for an Adobe ID, skip to step 10, and then come back to step 4.)
  5. Tap “add a library” and enter our zip code. (Tap the box to get a keyboard.) Tap “search.”
  6. Select our library (be careful – the school district comes up first!).
  7. On the next screen, tap the star to turn it yellow. This saves the library as a “favorite.”
  8. Tap the library’s name to access the catalog. (To get to this screen, tap the menu icon on the bottom of the screen, then “get books.” In the newer version of the app, tap the menu icon on the top left and tap the library name.)
  9. Search and download.
  10. On the first download, you will be prompted to enter an Adobe ID, if you did not enter it at setup. If you do not have one, click the yellow link at the bottom of the page to create one.
  11. Enter the ID and password in the app and tap “Authorize.”
  12. To enjoy the book, tap the title on the app’s bookshelf. To get to the bookshelf from the reading view, tap the menu icon and select “Bookshelf.”
  13. Tap the + next to the title in the bookshelf view to return/delete or get details about the item. (In the new app, press and hold a title for the same menu.)

Navigating E-books in OverDrive

  • To return to the main screen from the reading view, tap the menu icon at the bottom of the page and select “Bookshelf.”
  • Within a book, tap the menu icon to access item details, navigation, bookmarks, and reader settings.
  • Press and hold a word to look it up in a dictionary or Wikipedia. You must be connected to a network for this feature to work.
  • To create a bookmark or access bookmarks, tap the menu icon and select bookmarks.

Navigating Audiobooks in OverDrive

  • When listening to an audiobook, some menus are available at all times. Once can pause, fast forward, rewind, rewind 15 seconds, create bookmarks, view table of contents (navigation).
  • To return to the bookshelf view, tap the menu icon at the bottom of the screen and select “Bookshelf.”
  • To set a sleep timer, tap the menu icon at the bottom of the screen and select “Sleep Timer.”
  • To view book details, tap the menu icon at the bottom of the screen and select “details.”
  • Note – at least one “part” of the book must be fully downloaded before listening can begin.

Quick Tips

  • If OverDrive titles do not download to the app as expected, go to menu>files and make sure file downloads are turned on. When users engage “airplane mode” on their devices, file downloads get turned off. However, when the device is taken out of airplane mode, the file downloads do not toggle back on automatically.
  • If the battery seems to be draining quickly, press your device’s button for viewing open apps (for some, it is an icon on the screen that looks like two windows, on Samsung devices it is a long press on the hardware button.) When the list of apps comes up, swipe each to the left or right to close it.


  • Download and install the OverDrive app.
  • Download and return an e-book, experimenting with settings.
  • Download and return an audiobook, experimenting with settings.
  • Set up an email account
  • Take a picture or video and email it
  • Delete your email account.
  • Review the competencies above and be sure to experiment with all gestures and settings.

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