As many organizations and institutions in recent years are trying to update their hardware and software platforms toward using mobile technology, libraries and information centers as trustees and leaders of information management and information science need to be futurists in this area. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to investigate the status of using mobile-based services in the world’s top university libraries.
In this direct observation and quantitative research survey, the authors reviewed the status of using mobile-based services in the libraries of the world’s top universities.
The results showed that 84 percent of the libraries of the top 50 universities in the world have made their websites mobile-friendly and provide mobile-based services; however, only 30 percent of them have designed mobile library application. The findings of this study revealed that mobile phone services such as “Search catalog,” “Hour of library,” “Contact,” “Ask the librarian” and “News” in more than 50 percent of the libraries with mobile-based services has been used. While some services like “Services for disabled,” “Library card,” “Library Strategic Plan” and “Financial services” are less important to deliver on the mobile platform.
The results of the current research are only limited to this environment. Furthermore limited access to all features of some mobile library applications is another limitation of this work. Also, failure to download some of the university apps from the usual App store due to the nationality of the researchers is other limitations of the study. The authors try to find more details of these apps with connecting to the librarians of this statistic society.
The research results indicated that the majority of libraries in the world’s top universities have moved toward designing and using mobile platform in their websites. This survey suggests that the academic libraries of developing countries in order to follow this trend are supposed to plug in most used services based on experience of academic libraries of top universities.
The research results indicated that the majority of libraries in the world’s top universities have moved toward designing and using mobile platform in their websites. This survey suggests that the Iranian academic libraries affiliated with the Ministry of Science, Research and Technology and the Ministry of Health and Medical Education are also trying to follow this trend in order to meet the users’ information needs.
This study is an initial part of a doctoral dissertation with the help of “Ask a librarian” services of the world’s top 50 universities. In future, additional results obtained from the dissertation will be published in order to design an evaluation model of mobile library applications. The authors would like to thank editors and the two anonymous reviewers for their comments and constructive criticism of the manuscript. Also, the authors would like to thank Dr Amir Reza Asnafi and Dr Shima Moradi for their helpful suggestions and valuable contributions.
Pakdaman Naeini, M., Sharif Moghaddam, H., Ziaei, S. and Ghaebi, A. (2019), "Mobile services in the libraries of the world’s top universities", Library Hi Tech, Vol. 37 No. 2, pp. 184-192. https://doi.org/10.1108/LHT-07-2017-0140
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