Library at your doorstep : Librarywala
We have recently covered Pustak which is a book buying site for book lovers targeted at International editions. Now, the startup we are going to cover makes it easier than Pustak for your wallet. Librarywala is a online lending library. You can search and rent the books online. The books will be delivered to your doorstep. Librarywala is to books what Moviemart is to movies.
How does it work? It works like any other online rental service. You register, pick your books and they will be delivered to your doorstep. You can queue them up if the book is in circulation. You can keep a maximum of 2 or 3 books at a time. The total number of books per month varies from 3 to 12 depending upon your plan.
How much does it cost? There is a one-time registration fee of 499 rupees and security deposit of 499 rupees. These two charges are common across the plans. Based upon the plan you choose the monthly charge varies from 199 rupees to 3000 rupees.
Challenges : The security deposit they are charging really does not cover anything. The books they rent out are costlier than that. This is a gap which I am trying to understand. My best guess is they are riding on the trust factor.
Verdict : I liked librarywala and was click away from getting a membership. But the books I am looking for and the volumes they have did not match. I took a list of 10 books and did a search and found only 2. If you are willing to read the books they have and request them for the books of your choice then Librarywala is perfect fit for you.
The service is available only in Pune, Mumbai and Bangalore. Librarywala made it to the 30 short-listed nominees of the ongoing Tata-NEN contest.
PS : If you hold a Axis Bank credit card,the registration fee of 499 rupees is waived until 31st December, 2008