Facing a downward trend in the last few years, 2020 brought a surge of audio and eBooks as people looked for ways to pass the time during the Pandemic. The result was a 17% increase in sales. Leo also says it could signal a seed change back to people reading.
Libby is a mobile app that enables you to check out a library book for free, and transfer it to your Kindle app to read it. It takes a few minutes to sign up for a library card, and it's built with Overdrive, the standard in online book lending. You can also listen to audio books. iOS and Android.
Richard is visually impaired and has been listening to an audio book he converted from iTunes. But his phone won't play it. Leo says that audio books usually have an M4B standard to provide for bookmarking, and many audio players don't support it. It also gave him multiple copies of it. How can he bypass iTunes and play it? Leo says Richard could try iBooks. It will not only play audio books, but it can sync. But Richard says iBooks will only support purchased items. Leo says it will.
Karen tries to play audiobook files on her phone but they don't play in the proper order. Leo says that's likely because the player isn't very smart, and can't read the metadata. It's only looking at a file name. So she may need to number those media files in order so it will read them back properly. A better player will do.
David wants to know if he can listen to an audio book with his iPhone as well as his Android phone. Leo says he should, unless Apple does something different to them when buying them off iTunes. But if the audio book is from Apple's iBook Store, it's copy protected with the ePub format. He would need to strip it in order to play it on another platform. There are programs and plugins that do that, but they tend to be fly by night. TunesKit has one called iBook Copy for Mac. It has a free trial.
Gail is looking to get a Kindle eBook reader and she wants one that can read to her. Leo says that the Kindle is good, but she doesn't really have to buy a separate eBook reader for that. The Kindle App can read to her as well, because it has something called Whisper Sync. She'll just have to be sure she buys the eBook that has an audio book option, and not all do. But Leo says that the Kindle Paperwhite is a great option.
Evan listens to audiobooks but it drives him crazy that some audiobooks don't bookmark and pick up where he leaves off. Leo says that he can do that with any eBook by going into iTunes and looking into the MetaData. Select the audiobook in the "Options" tab under "Media Options" in iTunes. Then iTunes will bookmark it as he goes.