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Nov 03

Best Audiobook Subscription Services in 2019

By audiobookhoarder | Audiobook Service Reviews

There are tons of audiobook services out there, and tons of audiobooks to choose from. If you are on the lookout for the right subscription service, this list will help you determine the best audio book service for your needs.

Our definitive ranking of the best audiobook subscription services take into account factors such as selection size, price, and special features that are exclusive to the service or what the company is known for. At the end, we will also break down exactly which services are cheapest, have the largest selection, the best mobile app, the best unlimited selection service, the best credit-based system, and which one is the best overall.

Some of the audiobook services listed below offer other options, such as eBooks. Prices and selections vary, so you want to take all of these things into account when selecting the perfect service for you, which is what we did. Everything on our list has been broken down to help make your choice easier.

Why Choose Audiobooks?

For starters, listening is a lot easier and more convenient than reading a physical book. The sad truth of the matter is that bookstores and libraries are a dying breed, but we need not fear the loss of literature. With everything becoming increasingly reliant on technology, why should books be any different? That is where audiobooks come in.

This convenient format, and these convenient and affordable subscription services, are quickly becoming popular in the modern world. Now anyone can listen to their favorite novels on the go, without needing to cease any of their important business. In a world that is constantly in motion, it is nice to have your books with you without having to carry around the extra weight. Whether you are at work, at the gym, on public transportation, or somewhere else, you can always turn to an audiobook for entertainment.

There are so many companies out there that offer this service that it is hard to narrow down which one to choose. We want to give our money to the best audio book service that gives us everything we want at a price we can afford.

That’s where this list comes in.

From the avid listener to the new listeners, there is a service on this list that is perfect for you. We took the time to examine the features, prices, and selections of each of these brands, and then compiled this list for your benefit.

Our ranking of the top five best audiobook subscription services is in order starting with the best value, but all five options are great with their unique advantages and disadvantages. So to find out the best audiobook service 2019 has to offer, read on!

1. Scribd 

Launched in 2007, Scribd makes the top of our list of best audiobook service 2019 has to offer.

Sometimes called the “Netflix of audiobook subscriptions”, this service is one of – and, in our opinion, definitively is – the best on the market. From audiobooks to eBooks to documents and more, Scribd has quite a lot to offer for an arguably small price tag.

Scribd is our top choice for a number of reasons. For starters, this service features an unlimited listening subscription, which is not an option some other audiobook subscription services have. It has amassed quite a large selection of not only audiobooks, but eBooks, magazines, and more. If you are looking for a more versatile option, such as looking into eBooks along with your audiobooks, Scribd is a fantastic choice.

Scribd hosts a wide variety of genres for their audiobooks, so you are nearly always guaranteed to find what you are looking for. Of our list of the top five services, Scribd is definitely the best value for your money. Even the app is simple and easy to use. Users of all ages and experience levels can find what they need and easily navigate their app and website.

Scribd has everything you could want and more from an audiobook subscription service. With a large selection, a variety of options (even beyond audiobooks), and the best value, this is our number one choice for 2019. They offer a free 30-day trial so you can test out their extraordinary services, which you can sign up for here!

Why Scribd?

  • Unlimited listening
  • Large selection of audiobooks, eBooks, magazines, and more
  • Wide genre variety
  • Best value for the money
  • Easy to use app
  • 30-day free trial

2. Playster

Playster is our next choice for best audiobook service 2019. They are all about evolving with the times and, in their words, “entertainment unlimited”. As with Scribd, they offer a variety of services outside of their audiobook selection, though the audiobooks are definitely their best aspect.

This brand also boasts an unlimited listening subscription, which is not always easy to find from even the best audiobook subscription services. Though their plans are more expensive than Scribd, they offer similar services and a similar selection.

Playster, like our number one choice, is not only limited to audiobooks. It is a great choice for those who enjoy a good eBook as well, and it features a decent selection of audiobooks and eBooks alike. They have a number of different plans, such as their unlimited listening option.

However, unlike some services, they offer a family plan, for the groups who all enjoy a good story. With audiobooks and eBooks for all ages, the family plan is a fantastic choice for many people.

Playster also offers an option in which you can swap audiobooks at any time, no questions asked. If you start a book and find yourself unenthused, you can use this option to find something more suited to your tastes without needing to purchase the audiobook outright. It is a great option for the indecisive or the cautious. Playster offers a 30-day free trial to test them out, so click here to sign up!

Why Playster?

  • Unlimited listening
  • Features eBooks as well as audiobooks
  • Offers a family plan along with individual plans
  • Change audiobooks at any time
  • 30-day free trial

3. Audible

By now, Audible is almost a household name when it comes to audiobooks. They have so many ads out there, from radio to television to social media influencers, that they’re kind of hard to miss. Despite their successful branding, Audible only ranks third on our list. But even though it’s not our #1 audiobook subscription service, there’s still a lot to like about it.

Audible is owned by the mega-corporation Amazon, which gives them a leg up on much of their competition. They have connections other brands might not have, like their exclusive content and the ability to provide more options for less money. While Audible is not the cheapest, they are certainly one of the most extensive services on our list.

Audible often boasts “Audible exclusives”, which is something only they have due to their notoriety. They also have the largest selection of any audiobook subscription service, which we will discuss more about later. Like its competitors, you can easily swap audiobooks at any time, which is a great option to have.

With Audible, unlike some services, you can cancel at any time without any extra fees or repercussions if you decide you are unhappy. This is great news for those who are cautious about starting an audiobook service, but want to give it a shot. Audible is also relatively cheap for all of its features, with plans starting at $14.95. While they are not the cheapest, some argue that their vast selection makes up for the price difference. To try it for yourself, sign up for your free 30-day Audible trial by clicking here!

Why Audible?

  • Largest audiobook selection
  • Popular household name
  • Audible exclusives
  • Swap audiobooks at any point
  • Cancel at any time
  • 30-day free trial

4. Audiobooks.com

Audiobooks.com is another subscription service with a massive audiobook selection, and another household name. Unlike some of their competitors, they do not have unlimited listening options available, but they do allow the purchasing of extra credits for a fee. This is a great option for those who are really committed to owning their audiobooks.

Owned by RBMedia, they have access to a wide range of media, much like Audible. They boast trademark features such as Cloudmark sync and intelligent restart, both of which are unique to their brand and app. Audiobooks.com prides themselves on their versatility and their selection, and strive to make their services available on the go for users.

They have the second largest selection on this list, ranking just below Audible. They also have a super simple, super-efficient app. You can easily purchase and add titles to your collection from both the app and the website, which is not always the case with some services. The app can run on Windows, iOS, and Android devices, so practically anyone can use it.

Audiobooks.com has only one subscription plan, which costs users $14.95 a month after the end of the trial period. This fee entitles users to 1 credit a month, with extra credits available for purchase if you so choose. One credit means one audiobook, so more credits means more books! It is not the most budget-friendly option on our list, but their easy app and vast selection are the trade-offs. To give Audiobooks.com a try, sign up for their free trial here!

Why Audiobooks.com?

  • Massive selection
  • Purchase extra credits with subscription
  • Second largest selection
  • Great, easy to use app
  • One subscription plan
  • 30-day free trial

5. Kobo

Kobo is another great subscription service, sitting at number five on our list of the best audio book services. As the cheapest audiobook subscription service out there, it is often the most budget-friendly option, despite it maybe not having the same selection as other services. However, for the price, you get a lot of great things without putting a hole in your funds.

Kobo was founded in 2009, with the purpose of “empowering book lovers”. They have millions of eBooks and audiobooks available. Owned by Rakuten Inc, they offer an extensive array of books in different forms, so that anyone can enjoy literature on their device, however they choose to do so.

Whether you are an occasional listener or an avid listener, Kobo is a great choice. With plans starting at only $9.99 a month, you have a whole world of audiobooks to choose from each month without making a huge dent in your monthly budget. That low cost gets you one audiobook a month, but like their competitors, they allow for the purchase of extra audiobook credits. This flexibility is great for those just getting into the world of audiobooks.

They have a few different subscription plans, each with a different number of audiobook credits available per month or per year. However you break it down, Kobo is the cheapest option, though it may not be the best value for more enthusiastic readers. Whatever you decide, just like with other options, they have a 30-day free trial that you can sign up for here!

Why Kobo?

  • Cheap
  • Variety of subscription plans
  • Audiobooks and eBooks
  • Can purchase extra credits
  • 30-day free trial

“Best Of” Categories

Now that you know all about the top five audiobook subscription services, and a little bit more about their pros and cons, here are the best options for specific needs, such as cheap plans and size of audiobook selection. These top-five services all have great components, but some have more advantages over others.

Cheapest Subscription Service

Coming in at only $9.99 per month after the end of the free trial, Kobo is the cheapest audiobook service out there and the cheapest on this list. This particular subscription gets you one audiobook per month, so for those looking for a “low commitment” option, this is the best for you, as it costs little and gives you a chance to sample audiobook subscriptions to see if it is your cup of tea.

Meanwhile, Kobo also offers higher subscription plans that are comparable in price to what you might get with a basic subscription to one of its competitors. If you are searching for a low cost, low commitment subscription, Kobo is the way to go.

Largest Selection

The largest selection of audiobooks goes to Audible by far. Audible’s database gives users access to over 200,000 audiobook titles, which is leagues ahead of its competitors. Furthermore, Audible has monthly “exclusives” available only to their members, which is due in part to its connection to Amazon. With a mega-corporation like that at its head, Audible has far more resources than any of its competitors.

Furthermore, Audible is decently priced for this massive selection, and is a well-known and reputable brand. If you are someone who knows for certain that they love audiobooks and you are looking for freedom of choice, Audible might be the best option for you.

Best App

The title of best application has to go to Audiobooks.com. Their app is, by far, the most user-friendly and the most compatible with people who are consistently on the move. Their app is supported by all major smartphone systems, such as Windows, Android, and iOS. Anyone can use the Audiobooks.com app, and the app is free with your trial and subscription membership.

As with the other major brands, you can easily browse and register in-app. However, what makes this app in particular very special is the ability to purchase and download new audiobooks in-app! Most other brands do not support this feature, but for this reason in particular, Audiobooks.com has, by far, the best and most user-friendly mobile app.

Best Value

Our number one overall, Scribd, is also generally agreed to be the best value for your money. Starting at a low price and offering an unlimited listening plan, this brand is absolutely the best way to get the most out of your monthly payments.

As mentioned before, Scribd is not only limited to audiobooks. Once you are a paying member of Scribd, you also have access to a huge variety of eBooks, magazines, and various documents including sheet music. Scribd has a massive database of materials, all of which you can access with your membership. Though you cannot purchase anything to own, the variety of media alone is enough to make your monthly payment more than worth it.

Best Unlimited Listening Subscription

Of our top five competitors, both Scribd and Playster offer unlimited listening subscriptions, and both offer the ability to swap audiobooks at any given time. Both services have advantages and disadvantages even when it comes to this particular service, so it really comes down to what matters ore to you: saving some money, or having a larger selection.

Scribd is the more affordable option by half – literally. Playster is almost double the cost of Scribd in terms of their monthly membership fees. Scribd is, as you have seen, is our overall number one choice in general, and that remains true. Their unlimited listening option is perfect for the indecisive lover of literature who may want to save a couple bucks a month.

On the other hand, though it is double the price, Playster has a more extensive catalogue of audiobooks available. Both of these platforms offer unlimited listening, and while Playster will make a bigger dent in your budget, a bigger selection might make you feel like you are getting more “bang for your buck”, so to speak. So truly, in the end, it comes down to less money or more options, but either way, these two have the best unlimited listening plans on the market.

Best Credit-Based System

If Scribd and Playster are our unlimited listening options, then Audible, Audiobooks.com, and Kobo are our credit-based systems. But of these, which is the best? We know Kobo is the cheapest and we know Audiobooks.com has the best app, and Audible has the largest selection. So how to choose which of these is the best of the best when it comes to this credit-based system of audiobook listening?

The important thing to remember about credit-based systems is that, while they might sound disappointing in comparison to unlimited listening, these companies allow you to keep the audiobooks, unlike the other kind. With that being said, we have to say that Audible is far and away the best credit-based system, and here is why: selection.

If you are only issued one credit a month to download an audiobook to keep, it is safe to assume that you want more to choose from. With Audible’s massive catalogue and their exclusive options, they have the best library. Sometimes, through Amazon promotions or other avenues, you can even get a second credit each month to download another audiobook if you so choose.

While the other two, Audiobooks.com and Kobo, are also great services, if you are going to pay the price, then we can all agree that more is better. Audible’s selection puts it at the top of the credit-based systems by far.

Conclusion

There are lots of ways to listen to and download audiobooks. You can still do it the old-fashioned way in some places, by purchasing CDs to listen to and keep as an old relic. But with continuous advancements in technology and the increasing popularity of listening over physical reading, many brands have branched into the world of audiobooks. From iTunes to Audible to Scribd and all of the brands we have mentioned, this extensive collection grows every day.

We’re always on the move, but no one wants to lose the value of a story or the value of literature in their daily lives. This medium is a great compromise for a fast-paced world that still enjoys the wonder of escape that stories – fictional or not – can provide. Whatever genre you love, whatever age you are, there are tons of audiobooks just waiting to be discovered, and that is what truly makes any of these services more than worth it.

Whatever service you choose, we hope that our list of the top five audiobook subscription services of 2019 has made your decision easier. Choose wisely, and happy listening!

Oct 22

Audiobooks.com Review – Is it worth it?

By audiobookhoarder | Audiobook Service Reviews

You are probably a fan of books, or someone you know is into books. Well, for many, the increasing popularity of audio books is present, so if you are interested in them, you probably know the numerous options that are available for accessing your favorite authors. Some of these options include Playster, Audible and Scribd – all of them allowing you to buy your favorite books on CD.

The thing you can keep in mind is the more costly nature of audiobooks – in fact, they actually cost more than the print version, so the bill you pay can increase quickly. The most successful audio book service, Audible, for instance, limits you to a few books a month. If you are an avid reader, this may not be enough for you.

This has led to the rise of a newer service called Audiobooks.com, offering itself up as a nice alternative to the section of people that enjoy these products – you can even think of it as the ‘Netflix of audio books’. However, how does it measure up, and is it worth considering? Read on to find out.

The membership information

Regarding the membership status, there is only one membership plan available (at least for the moment). While it may not be a bad thing to consider more options for joining, it increases the efficiency in enrolment and makes the tracking process easier to handle.

Once you secure your membership, you will receive new credits that allow you to make purchases every month. You just have to pay a fee of $14.95 every month, which makes it the same as Playster and Audible payment plans.

There is a good thing about the prices of audio books on the platform – in fact, one of the best aspects it has. The prices of books are fixed, so there is no need to start worrying about whether you can afford a certain book you want to buy in the future. You know exactly what it costs, and you can plan ahead.

Another great thing about audiobooks.com is their free trial lasting 30 days, and it gives you one free credit that you can use to purchase your first audio book. If you are thinking of trying out the site, it is a good idea, as you can cancel at any time, with no extra complications attached. You can also check their library and see if the books they have are what you are looking for.

The store and library

One thing is for sure – the library of this site is massive. With over 100,000 books to choose from, it gives you almost the same opportunities as Playster, another good audio books site. The library is also decent, although it will not compare to the Amazon service Audible, which contains more than 80,000 books available to buy and download.

It is important to keep something in mind though you will not always find everything you are looking for on audiobooks.com. It has a high rate of findings, but these amount to about 75 percent. This is not a bad figure, considering that there are stores that have fewer books and smaller libraries; but you will not always get a book you are looking for even if it is popular.

The library has nice features and a good user interface, much better than some other sites. However, a book store must be able to give you the books you are searching for, at least when you are signing up for membership – even if it is above the usual cost. In this regard, there are stores that will beat out this platform, though it is still a good option.

There is an advantage this site holds over more established sites like Audible though – it allows you to buy extra credits using the same price as the first time you bought them. In this way, it is more affordable and has greater flexibility, especially if you a heavy consumer of books every month (more than two books). In addition, once you buy a book, it is yours for the keeping, even if you cancel your membership afterwards – unlike Playster, which operates like a streaming platform. This also makes it good if you are a heavy listener of audiobooks every month and you need to work within a budget.

All this means that the prices on Audiobooks.com are competitive. Every credit costs only $14.95, which is a better figure than what many other sites offer. In fact, it is only Scribd and Audiobooksnow.com that have lower costs on each book on average.

If you would like to explore some options, then you can either shop on the app or go online. Regardless of the method you choose, it is easy to explore the inventory of the site, since it has clickable book covers. This makes it have the feel of an actual book store. Its library is also very organized, as the categories are very specific. For instance, there are books classified under ‘Bets nostalgic listens’, ‘religion and spirituality’, ‘perfect firs listens’, and so on.

However, the drawback lies in the free book section, whose selection is slightly underwhelming. The offers on there are not exclusive to the platform, as they are either LibriVox books or public domain reads, and you can find them elsewhere on the internet. If these are what you plan to read, then you are better off with a free app instead of paying monthly fees to access them.

Is it easy to use?

The short answer here is yes. If you have used the Audible audiobook app, you will notice that Audiobooks.com has a similar design on their app, which is free to download on both Android and iOS stores. All the usual features you expect on an audiobook app are present. These include a sleep timer, narration speed adjustment, places to take important notes, and bookmarks.

All you need to begin from is clicking a button, and it opens a small window (if you are using a web browser), or a new window or tab (if you are on mobile), and then you can begin listening.

The organization of all these features is also simple and user friendly. For instance, adjusting the volume settings is very easy, which is a plus for them. In addition, all icons are contained on the main page, instead of a side menu.

In case you would like to move from the mobile app to a computer, you do not need to worry about losing your reading history. It also allows you to access your library on the webpage, as it provides syncing services across all the devices you use. 

When you visit the webpage, you will also notice that the latest book you are listening to is there, along with added suggestions and other books you may not have finished. The site additionally gives you recommendations depending on what you enjoy, and all product pages have legitimate customer reviews.

However, there are no chapter markers, so it is hard to tell the time left to finish a chapter, or the time you need to skip to the following chapter. This feature can particularly be useful if you are listening to a book of short stories or essays, for instance.

The apps themselves are easy to use, but they can take up significant storage space. You need to be careful because of that. In addition to that, avoid listening to books when you do not have a Wi-Fi plan (mobile broadband plans can outstrip your finances very quickly when you are downloading books). The website advises you to set aside about 150MB of storage for the books, although it does not indicate how much space each book occupies.

The quality of the audio itself is also fine, and it bears no significant difference from audiobooks on other platforms.

The customer support

The support features are not going to blow you away exactly, as they are not as developed as those on other platforms such as Audible. For instance, you cannot return books if you do not like them, unlike Audible that allows the user to return a book.

Contacting Audiobooks.com is possible on phone, as long as you do it during day hours, while the email support is also present. However, the FAQs page could use some improvements, and the live chat option is also not available.

Final verdict

Among the major pros of this service is the allowance for buying additional credits at fixed and affordable prices, while the major con is the lack of the extensive collection. However, it still remains a good option if you would like to build your library, and you are an avid consumer of audio books.

Regarding the design of its mobile app to the membership plan, it seems that the platform is seeking to follow the steps of Audible, the most successful Amazon audio book site. It does give you a very good price range for its books, so they only need to expand their library selection. You can try the other alternatives as well, including Scribd, Playster and Audible, and see what works for you – as they all have free membership trial periods.

Oct 13

Audible Review – Is Audible Worth it?

By audiobookhoarder | Audiobook Service Reviews

Amazon is the powerhouse of online retail – a quick search brings products and options to the forefront, and typically with a two-day shipping turnaround. Amazon also dabbles in other services, like video and music streaming options. One popular service is Audible, an online audio book library.

In typical Amazon fashion, Audible provides access to thousands of audiobooks. The access comes with a monthly subscription fee not included in an Amazon Prime membership.  With so many options for different types of services, one must research before making a commitment and therefore raises the question: Is Audible worth it?

The too long, didn’t read version is yes, at least for the trial period. You can subscribe to an Audible free trial for 30 days with free downloads, so one option is to stop reading here and start listening now!

Wait, What Are Audiobooks? 

Before diving into an Audible review, it would be useful to explain what an audiobook is and how Audible provides this service. Audiobooks are recording of texts being read, typically by a professional narrator or actor. Quality of narration varies based on the narrator. Typically, a professional narrator, or sometimes the author themselves, jump on and provide a quality experience.

Audible reviews by users highlight the delight of having an author read the book in the way they envisioned it or having a famous actor read a classic tale. Some narrators include Emma Thompson, Trevor Noah, and Carey Mulligan.

Audiobooks are good for driving commutes where the focus can’t be on a page-turner. Any activity that requires being hands-free, like hiking or cleaning, is easier with an audiobook. Readers, or in this case listeners, don’t have to remember a physical book or tablet and simply need a charged phone or other compatible device. Audiobooks are also great when productivity needs to include something other than finishing a great story.

The cons of audiobooks typically revolve around missing the feel of a physical book and turning pages. Simply put, books are for the eyes while audiobooks are for the ears. For those willing to try something new, audiobooks can be a pleasant alternative to the traditional reading experience.

So, More About Audible? 

As mentioned, Audible is a monthly subscription service from Amazon. The monthly fee gives subscribers one or two credits, which are then exchanged for any audiobook in the 200,000+ title catalog. Every book is one credit, no matter how long, short, highly ranked, classic, or a bestseller.

What Is the Commitment? 

At the time of writing, Audible’s monthly and annual rates include four plan options designed for different levels of reading activities:

  • Gold Monthly - $14.95/month for 1 credit/month
  • Platinum Monthly - $22.95/month for 2 credits/month
  • Gold Annual - $149.50/year (so about $12.46/month for 1 credit/month)
  • Platinum Annual - $229.50/year (so about $19.13/month for 2 credits/month)

Choosing a plan really depends on how many audiobooks one listens to each month. If you are hooked on the audiobook train, the upfront yearly membership can save about two months of fees in the long run. If a month ends up quite busy, credits roll over. This is nice because it means money won’t be wasted if a month is missed.

The subscription can be cancelled anytime, so if your finances or love for an audiobook change, Audible can adjust with that. At the very least, the cost of a month of Audible is akin to buying the physical book, and in some cases, it is less.

What Titles Can I Download? 

As mentioned before, Audible’s library is huge, and every book costs one credit through the monthly subscription fee. From the top of the New York Time’s Bestseller List to the most classic of titles, Audible has a lot to offer. It is a great advantage to be able to access new and popular titles with just a few clicks. Audible also shows reviews, ratings, and curates suggestions. The wide range of titles means access to all genres and the capability of catering to many different interests.

One aspect worth mentioning are three options specific to the Audible experience: Reese’s Book Club, the Romance Package, and Audible Originals:

  • Join the Club - Reese’s Book Club offers titles recommended by Reese Witherspoon. Reese selects a new title each month and subscribers tune in to hear it. Reeses’s Book Club is great for the indecisive listener who is willing to put trust in another person. If it ends up not working out, Audible has a great return policy, but more on that later.
  • Revive the RomanceYes, Audible has a Romance Package option focused on passionate, cozy, or tantalizing tales. At the same rate as the main Audible packages, subscribers can choose their level of romance and slip into some steamy tales. For more on this, listen to the teaser clips available on the Audible site.
  • Originality Is Key- Similar to Amazon Prime Originals, Audible has Amazon-produced content that won’t be found elsewhere. Audible Originals are produced exclusively for Audible and won’t be available on other platforms. A new offer from Audible is the ability to choose two Originals each month at no additional cost out of six options. This presents the opportunity to find a new favorite story and have more audio options throughout the month.

What Happens When I’m Done Listening? 

The nice thing about Audible is that once the credit is exchanged, the book is yours. Access doesn’t go away after the month or even in the event the subscription is cancelled. This is an advantage over other services that operate more like a library – taking back the access once you are done. Audible also doesn’t have a waitlist, and the audiobooks are delivered instantly and digitally once selected.

Anything Else to Know? 


  • Trial Period - Other pros include a free trial period. For thirty days, you can test out the service to see if it is worth the commitment. The free trial comes with two credits – so two books! There is no commitment after the period, so really there is no financial commitment until after deciding if Audible is suitable for your needs.
  • Sales and Discounts - Audible also offers sales and deals pretty regularly that are only accessible to Audible members. If you have already used available credits and really need another title, membership brings 30% off the list price of audiobooks. With this in mind, it is possible to purchase audiobooks from Audible without the subscription. However, most titles come in around $30, making it more expensive than just paying for one month at least in exchange for access to the desired title.
  • Love It or Return It - If the choice ends up not being what you expected, Audible does allow for exchanges. This feature shouldn’t be abused and if used incorrectly can result in membership revocation. It is designed to prevent being stuck with a bad title, but shouldn’t be used to attempt free books. If you purchase a book outside of the credits and don’t like it, you can refund it. Audible has a policy called the Great Listens Guarantee. Basically, if you don’t like a book, you can return it with 365 days of download.
  • Offline AccessOne of the pros of Audible includes access from phone or tablet without needing data or Wi-Fi. Once you download the title, the recording is available for listening!
  • Language ChoiceAudible is branching out beyond English and offering titles in other languages. At the time of writing, this includes titles in Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Italian, and Chinese. Titles covered include translations and originals.
  • Adjust SpeedIf the narrator is a little slow or too fast, the speed can be adjusted. This is great if English is not your first language, and you need to slow it down to fully understand. Speeding up the recording can help with a slow narrator or to just move through the book more quickly.
  • Sleep Timer If listening to the book as a way to fall asleep, Audible allows for a sleep timer. This can be the end of a chapter or after a certain time. This keeps you from missing a great plot twist and saves your battery.
  • WhisperSyncThis new development lets readers switch between listening to the audiobook and reading through the Kindle book. Add the audio companion to any Kindle book purchase, and you can easily flip between screen and headphones. This is great for when you have a moment to peruse the tablet or need to pop in the headphones and go. Either way, the story doesn’t have to stop! WhisperSync also tracks where you are in both versions, so when you switch it picks up where you left off in the other version.  The main drawback here is that both versions need to be from the same regional service. For example, a Kindle book purchased from the UK Amazon site won’t be compatible with an audiobook from the U.S. Audible platform. This isn’t a problem for most, but something to consider for frequent flyers.
  • Amazon AdvantageThe advantage to being a subsidiary of Amazon means counting on the same privacy and security considerations of the Amazon company. This means protection of personal information and data. Amazon privacy policies extend to include Audible.
  • Additionally, Audible is compatible with certain Amazon devices, like Alexa or Amazon Echo. You can cook or clean while Alexa reads your new favorite book! Integrating smart devices into the home became even easier, as shown in Amazon reviews for Audible.

What’s the Catch? 

Like any service, Audible has cons. Some drawbacks come to light through Audible membership reviews and other Audible Amazon reviews. Knowing all the facts and all the options allow for a smarter consumer choice, so of course Audible reviews should cover the drawbacks. Some cons are based on individual consumers and personal preference – which should certainly be considered in the decision process.

  • Subscription Fee - Audible is a monthly, reoccurring expense, similar to Netflix or HBO, and therefore needs to be worked into a monthly budget plan. If you are not consistently using the service, it might not be a wise investment. If you never actually listen to the books after downloading them, it is certainly a waste. If you joined Audible to quench a desire to digest one specific title, you might not consistently use the service enough to justify the cost. This is really based on personal use, but at least trying the free trial can give an idea of whether or not the cost is going to be worth it.
  • The subscription fee is higher than some other monthly services on the market and can be a commitment depending on finances. There are other audiobook sites with lower rates, but those sites might not come with the Amazon backing. One of those other sites is Scribd, a site with a similar platform surrounding audiobooks. The cheaper monthly rate potentially makes Scribd a solid alternative to Audible, but the library selection is much more limited than Audible. Scribd does have a free trial period as well, so certainly sign up to a free Scribd trial today and compare the two for yourself! If you can check out our Scribd vs Audible comparison to find out more.
  • Lost Credits - Yes, credits do roll over, but only for a certain window of time. Audible reviews report different numbers, but it seems credits disappear after a year. If you consistently forget to download books or remain largely inactive, Audible might not be the membership for you.
  • Different Type of Experience - This really depends on the person, but some people think listening to a book loses some of the magic in comparison to the feel and smell of a physical book. If you think books are meant to be read, not listened to, take this into consideration before committing to an Audible subscription. This is why WhisperSync is such a nice compromise – but Kindle eBooks are not included in the monthly fee for Audible. If you are completely new to the world of audiobooks, subscribe to an Audible free trial and decide from there! It is certainly worth the listen, even if it doesn’t work out.
  • Narration Quality - Audible membership reviews indicate narration can be a hit or miss in some cases. A lot of books have professional narrators or even the author as narrator, but not all of them. A poor narration can create a poor listening experience. This is where reviews and ratings come in handy, which is easily found on the site. Additionally, some books have previews available, allowing for a taste before diving into the commitment. With just a few credits each month, each title should be carefully selected, and narration quality is understandably a huge factor in making that choice.
  • Engagement Is Different - Circling back to reading versus listening, it is much easier for your mind to wander while listening to a book versus following the words on the page. If this happens frequently, engagement lowers and crucial plot points can be missed. One might need to frequently reverse and listen again to really understand what is happening. Again, this is a personal vice and would come back to who you are as an audiobook consumer.

Is Audible Worth It? 

Despite these cons, Audible is an extremely popular service for audiobook consumers and understandably so. Keeping the title forever once it is downloaded means having access to books at a lower rate than buying the title itself might be. Audible customers build up their libraries and can return to listen to their favorite title or narrator whenever the mood strikes.

Audible is also a stand-out in audiobook options when it comes to tracking across devices. This is so essential when moving between a smart device, tablet, and phone throughout the day as activities change. Time won’t be wasted finding where you left off as Audible tracks it for you. Audible works to create a smooth, integrative listening experience for subscribers and certainly seems largely successful in creating this.

Developments like Reese’s Book Club and Audible Originals show Audible is listening to customer input and growing with consumer interest and needs. It will be interesting to see how the service continues to grow and potentially offer new services or add-ons. Already steps have been made and opportunities opened!

Starting a free trial today can lead to being around for these new opportunities when they arise. The worth of a subscription really depends on how often you plan on using Audible, or at least remembering to let the library build up over time.

Audible is definitely worth the free trial period. One month brings two free audiobooks and a chance to see if the site offers what you need. You can test it out on a tablet or phone and really get the varied experience available in terms of narration styles and options. If it works out, great, keep it going and enjoy endless Audible options. If not, cancel the membership and move on. At the very least, you gave it a fair chance and can now come back and write your own Amazon Audible review.

Oct 03

All You Can Books Review – Is It Worth It?

By audiobookhoarder | Audiobook Service Reviews

All You Can Books: Is it the right choice for you?

Do you love reading? Then an unlimited supply of books is properly something that sounds quite tempting to you. Well that's exactly what All You Can Books has on offer - but is it worth it? Is it worth the money and do you get a quality service for your hard earned dollars? That's what I'm hoping to shine a light on with this review! Keep reading.

For Books

Books are awesome, there's no doubt about the, the realm of knowledge and stories available to us in this day and age is simply mind blowing. All You Can Books does what the name says and offers quite a serious library of books available for one monthly fee.

For Audiobooks

Do you love reading books and magazines but do not get enough time to read them? Well then, audiobooks are just what you need. You do not need to carry around a physical book or strain your eyes to read your favourite books. You just have to plug into your smartphones, e-readers, music players, or tablets and you can listen to the audiobooks wherever you want, whenever you want.

They can also be played on desktops and laptops which mean that you can listen to any book when you are at home. This makes audiobooks greatly beneficial for anyone who has to lead a fast-paced life and cannot sit down to read physical books.

However, to ensure that you get all your favorite books, magazines, etc. in the form of audiobooks, you need to use a good service that offers you a great collection of listenable items whether that be books, magazines, podcasts, etc. If you do not use a good service, you will have to work hard to find the audiobooks or podcasts that you want to and sometimes you may not at all be able to find them online because good content is often not free. As such, you need to find an online source that will be able to offer you anything and everything that you want to listen – from bestsellers to newcomers so that you are never out of good content.

All You Can Books – free audiobooks and more

For anyone searching for a good collection of audiobooks, ebooks, and more, a name that sounds promising is All You Can Books. They promise to offer you unlimited access to their inventory of books and more that counts to upto 40,000 and is regularly updated so that you get more content every day. You also get a free trial of 30 days and you can listen to any book or read any ebook without paying a dime during this period. You can cancel any time during the free trial period and you get to retain any book that you may have downloaded during this period. That indeed is a great option should you think of discontinuing with the service.

What’s more, you can get access to a number of language courses at the All You Can Books which makes it a great service for anyone willing to learn a language for free. Once the free trial is over, you have to pay only $19.99 per month to continue enjoying the services which is not as much considering their collection and what many other similar services in the market charge today.

Is it worth subscribing to All You Can Books?

Though All You Can Books may look promising with their inventory and free 30-day trial, customer feedback paint quite a different story. Customers haven’t been quite happy with the service that they offer to the readers. The first and most important reason of dissatisfaction amongst readers is because of their collection. Though they have quite a big inventory of listenable material, all you can books reviews mostly state that the quality of their inventory is quite poor. Readers haven’t found what they are looking for at All You Can Books. This is obviously quite a letdown as any content lover would want access to good audiobooks or ebooks from a service like this. Plus, the site has no proper search option that you can use to search for books that you want to read.

Next comes the shady practices that All You Can Books has regarding subscription fees and subscription cancellations. One such thing that you will find in any all you can books review is the cancellation procedure. Once you sign up for the free-trial that they offer, there is no option on their website to cancel your subscriptions. Users have to call up their support for cancellation of their subscription which is obviously a hassle that most people wouldn’t want to bear.

That’s not all, according to some all you can books reviews, users have been charged monthly subscription fees even after they officially cancelled their subscription. This is nothing but a scam and as such, it isn’t advisable that you do not opt to subscribe at All You Can Books, especially when you have various other excellent options available in the market.

Scribd – a better alternative

Since All You Can Books isn’t that good an option, it is better that you go for a service like Scribd that is sure to make you fall in love with its service and of course, its content. Scribd boasts of a huge inventory that includes more than 1,000,000 ebooks, 100,000 audiobooks, 124 magazine titles, and loads more that can satiate the thirst and hunger for new and engaging content. Whether you want to read all recent news and leading magazines or want to binge listen to audiobooks of your favorite series, Scribd is the perfect option for you.

What’s more, Scribd offers a free 30-day trial offer during which you can read or listen to as much content as you want and you have to pay nothing at all. Yes, not a dime. Once the 30-day trial period is over, you can continue your subscription by paying $8.99/ month which is a very small amount when you consider the vast and quality collection that they have. Scribd regularly updates and upgrades their inventory which means that you will never ever run out of things to read. So, Scribd is, indeed, a great choice for all types of content lovers.

Audible.com – A more expensive, but complete alternative

If you, at any time, feel that you need something more than what Scribd has on offer or cannot find a particular item on Scribd, you can opt to sign up with Audible.com. Audible has quite a larger inventory than Scribd and guarantees that you can find practically anything that you are looking for. With the acquisition of Audible by Amazon, the chances of expansion are much more, but rarely do you need such an extensive inventory, unless you are looking for something particular. Audible, too, has a free trial similar to Scribd, but it charges a minimum of $14.95/month after the free trial period.

Sep 19

Audible vs Audiobooks.com

By audiobookhoarder | Audiobook Wars

Reading books improve one’s cognitive and imaginative abilities. But despite this fact, many people still have a hard time reading books cover to cover. Some people would love to read but they just don’t have the time. On the flip side, others are just lazy. But, whichever category you fall in, audiobooks are here to the rescue.

Listening to an audiobook is convenient as it allows you to multitask. I mean, you can listen to an audiobook while you fly, drive or relax at home. And here is the most interesting bit: neuroscientists maintain that listening to an audiobook has the same effects on your brain as reading a book.

Given the convenience and accessibility of audiobooks, they have experienced a rise in popularity over the past few years. This spike in demand has led to the creation of numerous audiobook services. And while it’s great to have choices, deciding the best platform to use can be frustrating especially since the services are so similar. To help you out, I’ve taken the liberty of piecing together a detailed comparison of Audiobooks.com vs Audible.

Audiobooks.com vs. Audible

Basically, the concept of listening to audiobooks resembles Netflix streaming in the sense that users download audiobooks to supported devices and listen to them when it’s convenient. All audiobook services use this concept. However, they have different features which set them apart from each other.

Audible and Audiobooks.com are the most popular audiobook companies. New entrants inevitably have to measure up to the standards these two have set over the years. But how do the two measure-up to each other? And which company is better? Well, honestly, they each have their fair share of pros and cons.

Audible

Audible is owned by Amazon. The company was started more than two decades ago. When it first opened shop, it presented the world with a portable audio player (the first of its kind) which was designed specifically for audiobooks. The device cost $200 and could only hold 2 hours of audio. Today, this capacity fades in comparison to the hundreds of audiobooks and cumulative hours Audible has in its library. The number of devices compatible with the audible app has also increased exponentially over the years.

Pros

  • Audiobooks purchased are for keeps
  • It has a large library
  • Has WhisperSync for Kindle users
  • Great refund policy

Cons

  • Credits are lost once membership is canceled
  • Credits can expire if left in the account for too long
  • With the basic plan, you get only 1 audiobook a month

Audiobooks.com

Audiobook.com was started by a team of tech and book nerds in 2012 as a subsidiary of ‘Simply audiobooks’. In 2017, it was bought by RB Media. When it first started, it offered its monthly users unlimited access to their audiobooks. However, in 2012, Audiobooks.com canceled the unlimited access plan and reduced it to one audiobook a month. Over the years, the company has attracted a strong following and the app has had more than 1 million downloads.

Pros

  • Has a user-friendly app
  • Mobile device compatibility
  • Large audiobook selection

Cons

  • Limited subscription options
  • Slightly expensive

Audiobooks.com vs Audible – Price

Audible

Audible offers new members a free 30-day trial. During this trial, you have one free credit to spend on any book you like. In case you end up disliking the service, you can cancel the subscription at any time. And even after cancelling your subscription, you get to keep your audiobook.  After the 30-day period elapses, Audible automatically enrolls you into its Gold plan. For $14.95 a month, you get one credit redeemable for one audiobook monthly.  But for avid ‘readers’ 1 audiobook a month is not enough.

Think of it this way: an average audiobook is only 10 hours long. Most listeners go through these hours in about 5 days. So in addition to 1 credit, the Gold plan comes with a standard 30% discount on additional audiobook buys. If you decide to pay upfront and get the Gold Annual Membership, you pay $149.50. Essentially, you earn yourself 2 free months.

Other membership plans include Platinum and Silver. With the Platinum Membership, you get 2 credits every month for $22.95. This translates to 2 audiobooks of your choice every month. And if you ever need extra audiobooks, you can purchase audiobooks at a 30% discount. Like the Gold Plan, you can pay for Platinum Membership in advance for $229.50 and get two free months.

Audible keeps the Silver Plan ‘hidden’. They don’t advertise it. The Silver Plan costs $14.95 for two months. Users get one credit during the two months. To enroll in this plan, you have to request Audible for a downgrade.

Audiobooks.com

Like Audible, Audiobooks.com uses a subscription business model. However, instead of 3 membership plans, audiobooks.com has one. With its membership plans, you get 1 credit for $14.95 every month. The price is similar to Audible's Gold Plan. If you wish to read more, you'll have to purchase extra credit. But here’s the thing: with Audiobooks.com, you already know how much it will cost - $14.95. This means that for expensive audiobooks, you save more with Audiobooks.com than with Audible. Lastly, for users who've enabled Instacredit on their audiobook.com app, you don't have to buy credits. Your purchase will be directly charged to the registered card.

As a new member, you get a 30-day free trial membership. The membership comes with a free credit to use on any audiobook you fancy. And while we are on it, I should mention that audiobook.com has a gift center which features 4 present packages ranging from 1-12 months.

Note:  The person you wish to surprise has to be in the same country as you.

The gift plans are as follows:

  • 1 month subscription - $14.95
  • 3 months subscription - $44.85
  • 6 month subscription - $79.70
  • 12 month subscription - $149.40

Audiobooks.com vs Audible – Compatibility

Audible

You can listen to Audible audiobooks on lots of devices including smartphones, PCs MP3 players, tablets, Amazon Kindle, Amazon Alexa enabled devices, and Amazon Fire TV. And with the Car Mode feature, you can listen to your audiobooks in your car as you drive around.

Audiobooks.com

Audiobooks.com has a desktop and a mobile app version. With these apps, you can listen to audiobooks on virtually any device that supports the app including PCs, Smart TVs, and Smartphones.

When listening to your audiobooks, you can switch from your PC to your smartphone without losing your place. Your progress is always synced across all devices.

Audiobooks.com vs Audible – Library

Audible

Audible.com is more like an 800 lbs gorilla in this area. It features more than 180,000 audiobooks categorized into different genres. The genres include:

  • Health and Fitness
  • Kids
  • History
  • Thrillers and Mysteries
  • Drama and Poetry
  • Comedy
  • Business
  • Arts and Entertainment
  • Sci-Fi and Fantasy
  • Teens
  • Sports

And many more. Basically, if you cannot find an audiobook on audible, chances are it doesn’t exist.

Audiobooks.com

Though Audiobooks.com doesn’t have a library as big as Audible, it’s still pretty impressive. It features over 100,000 audiobook titles organized into genre categories similar to Audible. However, Audiobooks.com goes an extra mile and compiles book lists for its listeners. The book lists include:

  • Perfect First Listens
  • Essential Summer Listens
  • Great British Reads
  • Top New Releases
  • Sunday Times Non-Fiction
  • The Art of Adulting

And many more.

Audiobooks vs Audible – Refund Policy

Audible

If you happen to purchase an audiobook and realize it’s faulty, or for some reason you don’t like it, you return the book. Here’s how the refund policy works:

First, Audible calls it a 'Great Listen Guarantee'. This guarantee affords users the luxury of returning audiobooks they purchased in the last 12 months and did not like. If you purchased the book with credits, you’ll get a credit refund and if you used cash, your cash will be refunded. But don’t get excited yet. To keep people from taking advantage of this guarantee, the refunds are limited to 1 audiobook a month. Additionally, instead of a refund, you could get an audiobook exchange.

Audiobooks.com

Well, Audiobooks.com does not have such an elaborate refund policy. For the most part, purchases are final. However, if your case is genuine, you can always get in touch with the customer service via Live Chat or Email.

Note that Audiobooks.com grants refunds at their discretion. But if the audiobook is faulty, you'll get a replacement.

Audible vs Audiobook– Conclusion

So which of these two industry giants should you subscribe to? I recommend Audiobooks.com. Sure, Audible tramps Audiobooks.com with regards to library size. But then there is the cost of purchasing extra credits. Audiobook.com offers a fixed price for additional credit. This simplifies shopping as you can anticipate the costs. So if you to listen to more than 3 audiobooks a month, then Audiobooks.com is the best choice.

Also, I found the Audiobook.com app better compared to Audible. This is mainly because Audiobook.com has Instacredit, a feature that allows direct audiobook purchases. Audible is yet to include this feature.

Sign-up for a free account with Audiobooks.com today and give it a try - you will be mind-blown.

Sep 01

Is Scribd Worth It? An In-Depth Scribd Review 2019

By audiobookhoarder | Audiobook Service Reviews

When it comes to making digital decisions, the seemingly limitless options can be overwhelming. This leads to becoming crippled by the choices, and often results in nothing being done at all.

Digital reading options are one of those categories with options for days. With platforms like Audible, Kindle, and public library options such as Hoopla, it’s hard to know which one will provide what you’re looking for.

Here, we’re providing an in-depth Scribd review more thorough than any other Scribd reviews you may see online. After finishing this, you should be able to answer for yourself the question, “Is Scribd Worth It?”

What Is Scribd? What Makes It Great?

The Scribd app is often referred to by fans as the “Netflix of books” as it allows users to read books digitally via e-book or audiobook downloads. They offer an unlimited monthly subscription, allowing members to read or listen to as many books as they’d like each month. At the low cost of $8.99 per month, you have full access.

With a subscription, you get access to their full range of e-books, audiobooks, sheet music, periodicals, and more. This collection is full of hundreds of thousands of titles, with more constantly being added. To that point, they love to receive requests from users about what new content they would like to see added to the app. Sometimes they use these recommendations when they decide what new material to bring in.

Every month, the team at Scribd makes a recommended list of books curated by the experts behind the app. This gives a fresh selection of top books for subscribers to choose from, but as usual the rest of the collection is always available.

The mission of Scribd is to change the way the world reads. They approach the culture of reading from a modern standpoint, understanding how people are getting their information nowadays and bringing the best in journalism and literature straight to readers in that same method: via their electronics.

How Did Scribd Get Here?

Scribd began as a publishing platform in 2007 when it began with the aim to allow anyone, anywhere, to share their ideas with the world online. Six years later in 2013, Scribd created their first subscription service to allow readers monthly access to all their books at one simple flat rate. Then they began incorporating audio books, sheet music, magazines, and newspaper articles, adding to their collection of offerings and increasing their range.

What’s Scribd’s Current Standing?

At their current place, Scribd has over 700,000 monthly subscribers who have spent over 150 million hours reading through the app. Their founder has been listed in many lists of young accomplished entrepreneurs, including Forbes’ 30 Under 30, Inc’s 35 Under 35 and TIME’s Tech Pioneers, just to name a few.

Why – Off the Bat – Scribd Is Better

Before even diving in deep to the features of Scribd and other Audible alternatives, Scribd already presents itself as a better value. Why? Because you can try the first month entirely free, reading or listening to as much content as you please for the entire month, with no obligation to purchase anything after that. This allows you to test it out with no strings attached up front.

No other company has an offer similar to this. That’s groundbreaking! While, theoretically, you could make the most out of your first 30-day period, reading and listening to everything possible and not needing to continue the service after that, you likely won’t want to.

After the first month, you’ll be hooked! For the low cost of only $8.99 per month, having the ability to essentially read anything you want is absolutely unrivaled by other platforms.

The closest competitor to this offering is Audible, with a $15/month fee for one book download per month. When you compare that to what Scribd is offering, it doesn’t even come close. Spending fifteen dollars each month for one single book sounds ridiculous when compared to having many books or pieces of literature all for $9.

The Disruptor

It’s a stereotype that millennials like to disrupt things. They don’t go with the flow – they find a better flow. Scribd is a great example of this notion in action.

This new player is absolutely disrupting the digital reading space, with over 1 million titles offered to subscribers and an almost unbeatable price.

There’s a strong feeling that Scribd is about to become a much bigger name than they are currently, challenging the larger platforms of Audible and Kindle as they grow in power and readership.

What Do Users Have to Say?

The best information about a product always comes from the consumer themselves. In doing some research on what Scribd members have to say about the service, here are some key takeaways:

  • The limitless options make reading more attractive – users are reading more than they ever have before
  • The flat monthly fee is an absolute no-brainer
  • After trying the other options, Scribd came out on top
  • Doesn’t suck the battery life out of your devices when using the app
  • Color settings allow you to read in low light with ease and without too much disruption
  • The sheet music has brought out the inner musician in many readers
  • It’s a subscription that consumers can count on, and want to keep for a long time

Scribd Offerings – Book Titles

A digital library of books is mysterious and pretty worthless unless you know what is actually in the inventory. If it’s full of untouched titles or academic-only subjects, that inventory becomes obsolete to the average reader. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the literature offerings of Scribd and their massive inventory.

Now, one thing that Scribd is unable to compete with at the moment is a physical inventory of books. Some readers will always be physical readers -- they like the smell of paper, the feel of the pages between their fingers, dog-earring a page down to hold the place, and highlighting or underlining passages that really left an impact.

For that kind of inventory, Amazon is hands-down the place to go. Their selection is unbeatable, and their prices are often lower than what you could find in-store. Because of the insane sales they drive, they will likely always have the best selection of both hardcover and paperback titles from the best publishing houses.

Some publishing houses even have special deals with Amazon to sell their first batch of books exclusively with the online monster retailer. This allows them to distribute quickly, continuously, and at the highest price point they can get.

If new, physical books is what a reader wants, Amazon is the place to go. We can’t argue with that.

However, when the reader begins to switch to the digital route, Amazon gets in a bit of hot water. Digital and audiobooks are listened to or read on smartphones, tablets, or laptops. Amazon is trying to keep a stronghold on this realm, with the acquisition of Audible and their release of the Kindle Unlimited service, but they’ve got strong competition.

Their main challenger is Scribd. See, as we mentioned before, Scribd has an inventory of 1 million titles. Could you read a whole million books in your lifetime? Probably not. That number gives more of a sense of how much choice you have rather than how many titles you will actually read.

On the other hand, Audible offers a collection of 1 million - 2 million titles. At that point, the amount of inventory almost becomes futile. There are already too many titles to possibly read. All you need is a nice selection to pick through.

With the vague difference in inventory between the two applications but the strong difference in price and offering (remember that Scribd has 1 million titles, unlimited, at about $9 per month while Audible has 1-2 million titles, one book per month, at about $15 per month), the answer almost feels too good to be true. In this one-on-one comparison, there’s no question of is Scribd worth it.

While Audible is still a worthy contender, they must understand the advantage Scribd has over them in order to remain competitive.

 The truth is that the question of, “Who is better?” is not answered by the number of books offered. No, it’s answered by the quality of the selection. It’s within this that Scribd has a strong advantage over other options, giving Amazon, Audible, and Kindle a run for their money

A Stand-Out Offer

Where does Scribd really stand out against the competition? In audiobooks, magazines, and newspapers, that’s where.

Often times with other platforms, what’s available in the audiobook department is less impressive than physical or e-book categories. This can be a real bummer for book listeners, as they want the same quality offered to them as well.

Scribd’s selection of audiobooks will wow any true listener. They’ve got New York Times best sellers, classics, big-name biographies and autobiographies, and so much more. While their e-book selection is truly expansive and current, their audiobooks, magazines, and news articles provide a unique value to Scribd subscribers.

No longer will you have to wait weeks and weeks for that one book to reach the audiobook shelves! Scribd keeps their selection up-to-date, with new titles up on their app as soon as they’re out in bookstores.

Audiobooks

Scribd’s inventory of audiobooks is equal to or better than Audible’s collection. Considering they’re such a new kid on the block giving super-giant Amazon a run for its money, that’s impressive.

While Amazon often has first-rights deals to sell physical books, that’s not the case with the audio versions. Yep, Scribd gets the audio versions the day they are released. Amazon has no upper hand there.

Consider, for this example, a highly-anticipated memoir. It’s released on the first of a month, and you have access at the same time to the same title on both Audible and Scribd. With Audible, you would be able to download and listen to that book within the first day. You’re then finished with your book on the first day of the month, and left to count down the days until the next month so you can pick out a new title.

On Scribd, you’d download and listen to the same book on that first day, finish it, and begin downloading your next read of the month. You could keep repeating this pattern for the whole 30 days, listening to a full title each day.

With Audible, you listened to one great book that month, and you paid $15.

With Scribd, you listened to that same great book (plus 29 more), and you only paid $9.

That difference seems too good to be true, but it’s not. For almost half the price of Audible, you get as many titles as you want each month.

Magazines, But Digital

We see every day how more and more magazines are opting to go digital. They realize that their readers are getting their news via websites, not a news stand at the grocery store. So, they’re bringing their articles and journalism to the devices of those readers.

Scribd recognized this shift and brought magazines into their inventory, currently offer 124 titles. These magazines are big names like People, Time, Entrepreneur, Fortune, and the ESPN Magazine, just to name a few.

While their physical forms might be a dying breed, the digital space for magazines is just being expanded. While you might not choose to spend an extra $4 on a magazine in the store, when they’re offered in an unlimited capacity in addition to books and news for just $9/month, it’s hard to resist.

Here is where Scribd really ups their value proposition. This is something that no other provider has been able to offer yet. And without adding an extra fee for magazine access, they really sell the product here.

A Deep Dive into Pricing

In order to get a clearer picture of just how great Scribd’s pricing is, first we need to compare it to its biggest competitor, Audible.

Something we’ve covered in this Scribd review but that is covered-up in Audible’s pricing plan information on their website, is the fact that you only get to download one book per month with their basic subscription plan.

Since audiobooks are often used to pass time during things like commuting, exercise, or traveling, it’s easy to blow through one audiobook in just a couple short days. And then, what are you to do after your book of the month is finished? If you’re an Audible subscriber, you must wait until the new month rolls over.

Audible covers this up by showing that you get “one credit” per month, without actually explaining that one credit = one book. The only way to get more credits once your subscription has begun is to spend more money.

They also have annual plans, where you pay either $150 or $230 up front to get either 12 or 24 reading credits, respectively. You have access to all the credits at once, unlike the monthly plan where it works out to one credit per month. Even still, 12 books can be gone through within a month or two and then you must purchase more credits to keep reading or listening for the rest of your year.

These plans might seem decent to a prospective customer until they are compared with Scribd’s plans. In comparison, Audible’s prices seem absolutely absurd against Scribd’s $9/month.

The one upside to Audible that Scribd doesn’t offer is that you get to keep each book you download. Scribd is much more like Spotify in this way in that you don’t own any of the content you access, but you’re streaming it for the time being. But because your downloads are always unlimited, you can keep re-downloading titles if you want to reread or relisten them.

Because of this advantage, users don’t really care whether or not they own the content, as long as they have continuous access to them and the ability to always find new content.

Back to Audible, let’s explore what that one download credit really gets you. The average length of time it takes to finish an audiobook is about 10 hours. So, you get 10 hours of listening time each month. If you listen to a book in the car on your daily commute of 30 minutes each way, you’re listening to an hour each day. When commuting 5 days a week, you’ll finish your book in two work weeks. Or, if you have a long flight, you may finish it in one sitting. After that, the waiting game begins for the new month to roll over.

What if you decide you made a wrong decision with your one book of the month? Audible does allow one refund each month. They only offer one chance, however, so your second pick better be the one.

With Scribd, that pressure is gone. You’re allowed to make a decision and change your mind as many times as you’d like. While Amazon’s Audible does have pretty great customer support for their refunds, it’s still much simpler to just pick another title and instantly download it.

Amazon Customers Finding a New Loyalty?

Even lifetime Amazon loyalists have made the switch to Scribd because of their clear upper hand in the digital/audiobook space.

While Amazon once had the strong hold on this niche, there’s now more and better competition that’s giving customers more options.

People who devour books like they are going out of style are choosing Scribd over Amazon time and time again because the value proposition and price comparison makes the decision a no-brainer.

For paperbacks, Amazon still rules, but for something digital, Scribd is tightening its grip.

Signing Up for Scribd

Scribd offers a 30-day free trial, which is quick and easy to sign up for. If you have a Facebook account, signing up is even easier! Either way, it’s a simple process, but we’ll walk you through it anyway.

  1. Find the sign-up page for the 30-day free trial
  2. Sign up with Google or Facebook, or you can simply use their email form to sign up
  3. Add in your credit card information (This is standard, as the subscription begins after the first month, but you can always cancel before the first fee is drafted.)
  4. Begin downloading, reading, listening, and enjoying

The sign-up process for Audible isn’t any harder, but the withdrawal to your bank account once the free trial expires will be much nicer (read: cheaper) from Scribd.

If you’re not happy with the Scribd service during the first trial month, simply discontinue your subscription before the first month ends, and you’ll never be charged for anything. Everything you read during your trial period is their treat.

Scribd Review 2019 Wrap Up

In this Scribd review for 2019, we covered all the benefits it boasts against Amazon’s competitor service, Audible.

This millennial brand is disrupting the digital reading space by offering a Netflix-like streaming service that offers unlimited reads or listens each month for one flat rate of just $8.99.

They have a competitive inventory, immediate availability, no limits, and content that can’t be found on any other similar platform.

Their price is almost half the amount of most competitors, giving it an advantage before quality and inventory is even considered.

With their free trial, a prospective customer can use the app for a whole month, reading and listening to as much magazine, newspaper, or book content as they please without paying a dime.

While Audible may come with a big name like Amazon to back it up, Scribd has a quality and depth of offerings that is unmatched by any other brand on the market.

Signing up to try the app is easy, and it allows access to millions of titles. After a month of enjoying Scribd, you’re sure to become a loyal member.

Sign up for a Scribd free trial today and begin your journey into the depths of literature that are now all available on your digital devices.

   

Aug 29

Playster vs Audible – Audiobook Wars – Which is best?

By audiobookhoarder | Audiobook Wars , Blog

Welcome to Playster vs Audible - the showdown! Which audiobook subscription service is best? It's hard to say, both have their advantages and disadvantages, but in this post we'll be going through each of the pros and cons for each service and coming to a conclusion to help you understand which audiobook subscription service you should be giving your money.

Contender #1 - Playster

Playster is our first contender in this battle of Audible vs Playster. Playster doesn't just offer audiobooks, Playster offers a wide variety of media including movies, music, regular books and even video games. However, they are all charged separately, so you can just get Playster for the audiobook service if that is what interests you.

Playster was founded in 2014 and it can be accessed using any normal web browser on Windows or Mac. It is also accessible on iOS and android devices.

Regarding pricing, Playster is the definite winner here with $14.95 per month for the basic version (which allows access to all "basic" books) and $29.95 per month for the Premium plan. I've found that the premium plan is well worth the money as the variety and quality of the audiobooks on offer is much better.

Contender #2 - Audible

Welcome to our second contender - Audible. Audible is a big name in this space and it is owned by Amazon. They have a massive library with every kind of audiobook you can think of.

However, Audibles pricing structure is very different. You get credits that can be redeemed for audiobooks. for $14.95/month you get 1 credit per month and for $22.95 per month you get 2 credits per month. There is a rollover of credits of up to 5 credits for the Gold plan and 10 credits for the Platinum plan.

In terms of what is available, their is a much better selection for Audible compared to Playster, however Playster is much, much more affordable if you are planning on listening to more than 1 or 2 audiobooks per month.

If you're a bit of an audiobook addict, like me, you might want to try out Playster to see if they have the titles you are interested in.

So, who wins?

This was a tough one to compare two great services, but Playster clearly wins the best value for your money and if you're someone who listens to a lot of audibooks, it's definitely worth giving them a try. However, if you only have a few select audiobooks you want to listen to and they are not available on Playster, Audible might be the right fit for you.

Aug 23

Scribd Vs Audible – Audio Book Wars

By audiobookhoarder | Blog

Scribd Vs Audible - which is better? You're about to find out! Welcome to Audio Book Wars.

In this post we'll be comparing Scribd and Audible and highlighting the unique features each service has. If you're unsure which service to use, this post should help you decide! So without further delay, let's get started!

Contender #1 - Scribd

Scribd is the underdog in this fight, they are a much smaller company than Audible, but they have plenty to offer! They were founded in March 2007 by Jared Friendman, Tikhon Bernstam and Trip Adler but it didn't start it's subscription service until 2013 and they added Audio books so it's service in November 2014. Since then it has grown to over 80 million users and it is often referred to as "the Netflix of books".

Scribd has apps for Android, iOS and also the Kindle Fire, Nook, Mac and Windows personal computers.

As a Scribd subscriber you can check out unlimited audio books and regular books a month from a variety of publishers including Lonely Planet, Perseus Book Group, Wiley, Workman, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Harlequin, Bloomsbury and Simon & Schuster. The cost is only $8.99 per month and there is a 30 day free trial.

Contender #2 - Audible

Audible is the big boy in this fight, they're owned by Amazon after being bought in 2008. Their audio book catalogue is comprehensive and includes more than 200,000 audio programs from tons of leading audio book publishers.

Audible is compatible with iOS devices (iPhones, iPods and iPads), Android devices, Windows Phone, Kindle Fire, Kindle Oasis, Sandisk MP3 Players, Creative MP3 players, VictorReader Stream, BrailleNote, Garmin, Mac and Windows computers.

As an Audible subscriber you receive between 1 and 2 credits per month depending on your plan, there are no regular books included. Their plans are $14.95 per month for 1 credit and $22.95 per month for 2 credits. Most audio books can be purchased for 1 credit, however some books require 2 credits and some smaller, short books only cost half a credit.

So, who wins in the battle of Audible vs Scribd?

It depends on what books you want to read, but Scribd clearly wins in terms of bang for your buck, you don't have to worry about redeeming an audio book that you don't like and you also get regular books available as well if you fancy a regular text-based book. Audible does have some better publishers though. If you can find the books you want to read on Scribd, we recommend going with them. And with a 30 day free trial, why not give it a try?