County libraries begin SmartSpot lending program

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GREEN COVE SPRINGS – Clay County Public Libraries now have free mobile Wi-Fi “SmartSpots” available to check out for 14 days with your library card. SmartSpots tap into 3G and/or 4G cellular networks like a cell phone and provide access to the internet on nearby laptops, tablets, game consoles or anything that can connect to a Wi-Fi network.

According to the American Community Survey, 17% of Clay County residents have limited or no access to the internet, either because of cost, or it just isn’t available in their area. Clay County Chairman of the Board Gayward Hendry said, “Access to the internet is essential in today’s society to apply for jobs or benefits, purchase essential supplies, or learn remotely.” Chairman Hendry continued, “Providing free internet to homes that don’t have Wi-Fi helps reduce the gap in access to technology and allows safe and free internet use in the comfort of your home.”

Library Services Director Karen Walker said, “Clay County libraries purchased 25 SmartSpots through Kajeet Incorporated, who typically serves school districts and is a great partner for the library system.” Kajeet filters out non-educational sites and blocks harmful content such as websites containing malware, viruses, proxies, and phishing. The funding to purchase the SmartSpots came from a Northeast Florida Library Information Network 2020 innovation grant.

Reserve your SmartSpot online at www.insignia.claycountygov.com/Library or at any of the five library branches. You will be notified when the SmartSpot is ready and have three days to pick it up. The SmartSpot comes with one device, one micro USB cable, one USB charger, one quick start guide and a carrying case. You must be 18 or older to check out the device. One SmartSpot can be checked out for each account. Tutorials on connecting to the internet are available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qq9AspxkP68. Call your local library branch for details.

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