Cobb County Public Library has Wi-Fi-equipped Chromebooks for checkout for people with little or no broadband access

Front of Switzer Library, a brick building with a white columned entrancewaySwitzer Library (Photo Cobb County Courier/Larry Felton Johnson)

The Cobb County Public Library now has 150 Chromebooks with built-in cellular Wi-Fi service that are available for checkout to library patrons 17 years old and up who have either limited or no broadband service.

Library patrons can check these Chromebooks out for up to three weeks.

“Our Chromebook rollout is an opportunity to amplify the role Cobb libraries play as a community partner in bridging the broadband access gap many of our neighbors are experiencing in the county,” said Shelley Zhang, CCPL Division Director of Technical Operations in the county news release announcing the availability of the devices.

The devices are configured for web browsing and for working with Google services such as Google Workspace (their suite of office utilities), Google Docs (for word processing) and Google Sheets (Google’s spreadsheet program).

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The Chromebooks have Wi-Fi service from T-Mobile, but can also connect to different networks.

The devices were purchased with funds from the Federal Communication Commission’s Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF) that provided $7 billion in grants to public libraries and schools, and was part of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA).

“We are committed to our Connecting Cobb initiative with support from federal, state, and local government partners and through community, partnerships striving to ensure everyone is connected,” said Cobb Library Director Helen Poyer. “I am proud of our Connecting Cobb team and we all know much work remains to be done.”

>> To read the complete article about the Chromebooks on the county website, please follow this link

About the Cobb County Public Library

According to the Cobb County Public Library website:

Cobb County Public Library is a 15-branch system headquartered in Marietta, Georgia, where its staff members serve a diverse population of over 750,000 people. Cobb is one of Georgia’s fastest-growing counties, and Cobb County Public Library is dedicated to being a resource center in the community by providing equal access to information, materials, and services.

History of Cobb’s library system

The first public library in Cobb County was opened in the home of Sarah Freeman Clarke in Marietta. The first standalone library building, opened on Church Street in 1893 and was named for Clarke.

Libraries were opened in Acworth and Austell in subsequent years, and in 1959, the city of Marietta and several other Cobb County libraries combined to form a countywide system that began the Cobb County Public Library as we know it today.

You can read more about the history of the Cobb County Public Library by following this link.

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