Long-Term Device Lending Program

The Long-Term Device Lending Program helps bridge the digital divide by providing free access to Chromebook laptops and home Internet via home Wi-Fi routers, supported through funding from the Emergency Connectivity Fund. The Boston Public Library also provides free computer and technology classes to help people use computers and the Internet.

NOTE: If you are only interested in borrowing a device for a short period of time or need the flexibility of a hotspot instead of a home router, please check out our hotspot lending program and our Connectivity Kit lending program (Chromebook + Hotspot).

Eligibility FAQs

  • The Long Term Device Lending Program is open to any adult resident of the City of Boston. If you do not already have a Boston Public Library card, you can sign up for an electronic library card or "eCard” instantly at BPL.org/ecard.
  • The Long Term Device Lending Program is intended for adults living in the City of Boston who do not otherwise have access to equipment or services sufficient to meet their educational needs. Please do not request a device if you already have suitable Internet and/or a computer to enable you to engage in online learning.

    Library staff will not decide if you are eligible. You will need to certify that you do not have suitable service or devices to engage in online learning in order to borrow a device.

  • You may keep lent devices for as long as you need them.

  • No, only adults living in the City of Boston are eligible.

  • No, this program is for adults. We advise that you contact your child’s school, as they may be able to lend a computer for student use.

  • Yes, if your roommate does not have a suitable computer for online learning, they may also request one. However, they should not request a home Wi-Fi router if you already requested one; They will be able to access the Internet through the home Wi-Fi router provided to you. Only one Wi-Fi router per household will be distributed.

Application FAQs

  • Boston Public Library patrons may complete an application for the program at BPL.org/long-term-lending. Assistance is available at any BPL location.

  • You can apply with an expired card (if you are requesting the device be shipped to the Boston address listed on your expired library card account) but it’s a great idea to renew your library card! You can also sign up for an electronic library card or “eCard” instantly at BPL.org/ecard.

Device FAQs

    1. Power On
      If device is not powered on, press the power button in top right corner of the keyboard. 

      If the device doesn’t turn on, plug it into a nearby outlet with the power cord until charged.

    2. Connect to Wi-Fi
      Chromebooks automatically connect to Wi-Fi Routers provided through the Long-Term Device Lending Program, BPL Wi-Fi networks, and BPL Hotspots.
      To connect to a different Wi-Fi network:      
      1. Click on the Quick Settings Panel at the bottom right of your screen.
      2. Click on the ‘No Network’ icon.
      3. Select your Wi-Fi Network.
      4. If needed, enter Wi-Fi password. More Information on connecting to a WiFi network is available on Google’s support website.
    3. Log in
      Select one of the following to log in:     
      • BPL Guest Session – No username or password necessary
      • Add Person – Login with the email account you used when requesting this device (must be a Gmail / Google Workspace account).Children borrowing your device are required to use a guest session or students can login with their Boston Public School account.

        If you are currently being blocked from logging in with your personal account, please complete the following form to certify you are an adult and will use the device for lawful purposes: BPL Chromebook Login Request Form

        Disclaimer
        By using this device, you agree that you will not use it as part of any illegal activities. The library is not responsible for any files, data, or personal information accessed or transmitted using this device.

  • If your Chromebook does not turn on, try charging it for a couple of hours by connecting it to an electrical outlet with the power cord. In general, keep your Chromebook connected to an outlet to keep it fully charged.

    If you are still having a problem, contact Chromebook vendor SHI for assistance at NewEnglandGov@SHI.com or call or 888-744-4084. Indicate that you received the device through Boston Public Library’s Long Term Device Lending Program.

  • We cannot replace stolen or lost Chromebooks. Please email LongTermDeviceLending@BPL.org / LTDL@BPL.org with your contact information as soon as there is an issue so that the Chromebook associated with your account can be identified and disabled. You will not be charged.

  • For support using your Netgear Orbi Home Wi-Fi router, contact First Call Wireless via text or telephone at 954-302-3756 or via email at BPLsupport@FirstCallWireless.com

    Support is not provided for download / upload speeds, as those vary greatly by location due to cellular network signal strength.

  • Federal funding rules for this program require that we have web filters in place to be compliant with the Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA). The web filter is managed by a third party that has determined the site is not be suitable for minors.

  • If you no longer have a need for your device, please email LongTermDeviceLending@BPL.org / LTDL@BPL.org for instructions on how to return.

  • If you are currently being blocked from logging in with your personal account, please complete the following form to certify you are an adult and will use the device for lawful purposes: BPL Chromebook Login Request Form

  • This program provides access to the Internet through June of 2023 (may be extended as funding permits). After that date we recommend looking into an Affordable Connectivity Program such as Comcast’s Internet Essentials. You can also find information at https://ACPbenefit.org/

  • If you have a question about the program or the status of your application, please email LongTermDeviceLending@BPL.org / LTDL@BPL.org.

    To get assistance using a Chromebook, please visit your local BPL branch or reach out to the Community Learning team at 617-859-2323 or ComputerWorkshops@BPL.org or visit BPL.org/computer-classes for information about computer classes and tutorials for learning technology at home. 

Back to Top