The use of handheld mobile devices: their impact and implications for library services

Joel Cummings, Alex Merrill, Steve Borrelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Purpose The purpose of this paper is to carry out a survey in order to better understand the nature of handheld mobile computing use by academic library users and to determine whether there is a significant demand for using the library services with these small screen devices. Design/methodology/approach A survey is created to measure whether people want to access an OPAC with a small screen. Additionally, through openended questions, the survey attempts to gain a broader understanding of handheld mobile computing's impact on, and implications for, the services provided by academic libraries. Findings A total of 58.4 percent of respondents who own a webenabled handheld device indicate that they would use small screen devices, such as PDAs or webenabled cell phones to search a library OPAC. Originality/value The increasing prevalence of handheld mobile computing devices such as PDAs and webenabled cell phones warrants investigation as to its impact on libraries. This study examines an academic library user population and the potential demand for using the library's catalog with handheld mobile computing devices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)22-40
Number of pages19
JournalLibrary Hi Tech
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 9 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems
  • Library and Information Sciences


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