Local library cards may be the next hot mobile accessories.
Users of Amazon's popular Kindle e-reader now have access to the wealth of e-books available at public libraries, in a similar fashion to borrowing a physical book.
Thousands of local libraries in the U.S. will make their electronic collections available to Kindle owners. Amazon recommends using library websites to set up borrowing and browse through titles.
"Libraries are a critical part of our communities and we're excited to be making Kindle books available at more than 11,000 local libraries around the country," noted Jay Marine, director of the company's e-reader department.
The company is touting the added benefits of using an e-reader to take out library books – in addition to the convenience, users can mark up their books, which is strictly forbidden in physical library holdings.
"[We're] extending our Whispersync technology to library books," continued Marine, "so your notes, highlights and bookmarks are always backed up and available the next time you check out the book or if you decide to buy the book."
The best part of e-lending may be not needing to return the book on time and pay late fees, as libraries can automatically "return" the book to its digital shelves.