It is almost 2024, and people like you and me have stopped ‘reading’. What do we do instead? We ‘listen’.
Opting for an audiobook subscription service is the post-millenials’ answer to fast reading. Be it any genre – fiction, romance, sci-fi, top personal training books, or even popular high school books, you may just ‘listen’ to them all.
In this blog, you will find the best audio book subscription apps in both the paid and free categories. Scroll till the end to also find the popular sites for an audiobook calculator.
7 Best Paid Audiobook Subscription Apps
When it comes to the best audio book subscriptions, certain apps are preferred over others. Recently, The Guardian even started releasing its audiobook of the week list for readers to search for in these apps.
Let’s look at the top service apps in this category.
“Best Audiobook Listening Platform”
Audible is an Amazon-based service. You can even share audible books for free if you’ve subscribed to the app. It provides 2 subscription plans for its audiobook library – Audible Plus and Audible Premium Plus.
- Unlimited access to 100,000 titles.
- You will ‘own’ the audiobooks that you purchase.
- Exclusive latest and best-selling content.
- Best and most comfortable features.
- 1 Audible credit per month for premium titles.
- Sync across multiple devices.
- 30-Day Free Trial
- Plus: $7.95 per month
- Premium Plus: $14.95 per month
- Premium Plus (2 credits): $22.95 per month
In Premium Plus, you may choose one bestseller or new release every month. In Premium Plus (2 credits), you may choose two bestsellers or new releases every month.
“Most Affordable Services”
Scribd as an audio book subscription service, provides the most in the least amount of money. With a single subscription, you can gain access to audiobooks, e-books, magazines, documents, podcasts, and sheet music.
- 300,000+ audiobooks, 2,000,000+ e-books, and 1,000,000+ magazines and news articles
- Unlimited audiobooks in every genre
- Educational courses and materials
- Personalization tools, bookmarks, note-making, and speed controls.
- 30-Day Free Trial
- $11.99 per month
With Scribd, you may even integrate it with the Kindle Unlimited. This way, it would become easy to both read and listen to the books you like.
“Best Alternative to Audible”
Audiobooks.com is an underrated platform from which you can purchase audio book subscriptions that offer high-quality content. It even has curated book lists from the New York Times and other popular platforms.
- 400,000 premium audiobooks for subscribers.
- You may choose 3 free audiobooks from 10,000 selections.
- Exclusive monthly deals and sales.
- VIP program that offers 150 books each month in every genre.
- Audiobook clubs for binge listening.
- 1 audiobook can be redeemed for every credit.
- 30-Day Free Trial
- 1 credit per month: $14.95
“Best Audiobook Summary Service”
The Blinkist is an audio book subscription platform for professionally narrated book summaries. It can be accessed through Android, iOS, and Alexa devices.
- 5000 selections of summaries.
- Unlimited access for users.
- 1 summary free per day for free users.
- It’s a cheap audiobook subscription service.
- Offline access to the library.
- 7-Day Free Trial
- $12.99 per month plan
- $79.99 per year plan
“Best for Social Cause”
The Libro.fm claims to support local bookstores with every purchase. The pricing of audio book subscriptions depends on the number of credits, with each credit providing one audiobook.
- 400,000 audiobook titles.
- Audiobooks can be downloaded and saved as MP3s.
- 2 audiobook credits in the beginning.
- Human-made playlists.
- Support local community bookstores.
- 30-Day Free Trial
- $14.99 per month
“Best for quality DRM-free audiobooks”
Downpour is among the platforms where you can get the best audiobook subscriptions. It is owned by Blackstone Audio. It provides copyright-free audiobooks, that can be easily downloaded and even copied to external drives.
- 75,000 titles for audiobooks.
- Books in over 100 genres.
- Digital rental services for CDs and MP3s.
- Access to the library even after subscription cancellation.
- Subscription is credit-based.
- Access to the library even after cancellation
- No Trial Period
- $12.99 per credit
“Everything for a Single Fee”
The Bookbeat with its unlimited access at a flat rate provides one of the best audiobook subscription services. All major publishers and modern bestsellers can be found on the platform.
- ‘Truly unlimited’ audiobooks at fixed monthly fees.
- Download audiobooks and listen offline.
- E-books are also available.
- Simplified app for user experience.
- Comparatively lower library size to competitors.
- Might not be available in the USA.
- Free Trial: 30 Days or 20 Listening Hours
- Basic Plan: £5.99/month for 20 hours/month
- Standard Plan: £9.99/month for 50 hours/month
- Premium Plan: £14.99/month for 100 hours/month
Hence, these 7 apps are among the best audiobook subscription services that are available for paid users.
5 Free Audiobook Online Service Apps
Do not worry if you do not want to pay a price. There are also apps where you can get your favorite audiobook free online. On these apps, you may get an audiobook without a subscription, as you just need to sign in with your details.
“Best Audiobooks for Free”
OverDrive & Libby lets their users borrow and listen to their audiobook library just with the general library card. However, the major drawbacks of these platforms are the long waiting time, and the fact that you cannot keep books with you forever.
- Connected to 45,000 libraries for books.
- Avail audiobooks, magazines, and e-books.
- Accessible on web browsers, iOS and Android devices.
- Offline access is available.
- You can send books on Kindle.
- User-friendly app design.
- OpenDyslexic font is also available.
“Free public domain audiobooks”
LibriVox has a partnership with Project Gutenberg and the Internet Archive to make public domain books accessible. It is also one of the major audiobook Z Library alternatives for bookaholics.
- A catalog of over 18,571 books.
- Books are available in 47 languages.
- Downloading and offline access are available.
- The latest content and bestsellers might not be available.
“Something for Free”
The Apple audiobook subscription service can be availed through iTunes. Some books might be found for free, while for others you will need to pay.
- Compatible with all types of Apple devices.
- Some exclusive books by Apple.
- For paid books, the cost is $9.99.
- The paid books are owned for life.
- Highly comfortable user experience.
“Hard to find titles for Free”
You may even search for an audiobook on Spotify. They recently announced the launch of audiobooks for U.S. listeners. It has both free and paid titles available. The free titles are generally public domain books.
- Both classic and newer titles are available.
- A large section of app features of Spotify.
- Option available for creating playlists.
- Desktop and mobile applications are available.
“Audiobooks with Visuals”
If you are a bookaholic, you may also want to search for an audiobook on YouTube. The free and easy access to books is its major distinguishing feature.
- A visual element for some audiobooks.
- Older classic audiobooks of the public domain are available.
- Many children’s books are available.
- Speed customization is limited.
Hence, if you want to get an audiobook without a subscription you may sign in to any of the above apps for free.
What to Consider When Choosing an Audiobook Subscription?
Before you decide which is the best audiobook subscription service for you, you must first consider the factors involved in decision-making.
- Frequency of Usage: If you listen to audiobooks too often, a paid subscription might be a better option for you.
- Types of Books: For bestsellers and new titles, you might need a paid service.
- Budget: If you have a lower budget, you may consider free apps that provide public-domain audiobooks.
- Features: If you need specific features, you will need to search for specific apps with those features.
- Devices: Most apps can be accessed through all devices. Still, it would be better to consider their availability on your devices.
You may consider the factors above while scrolling through the audio book subscription apps in the following sections.
Audiobook Speed Calculator
If you want to increase your overall listening experience, you may explore an audiobook speed calculator. It is a handy tool that analyzes the link within an audiobook’s length, listening time, and playback speed.
With Audiobook Speed Calculator’s analysis, the audiobook calculator can tell you two things. First, the optimal playback speed for the desired listening time. Secondly, the exact time you may save by changing the listening speed.
Below are some of the popular audiobook speed calculators:
However, instead of ‘listening’, if you want to ‘read books’ faster, you may also try the best bionic reading apps.
To Sum it Up
When it comes to finding the best audiobook subscription service, there are nth number of options to choose from. Both paid and free apps come with their own set of pros and cons. Every app has its own set of distinct features and services.
However, it is your individual needs and expectations that must guide your decision in choosing the right app. The frequency of your usage, budget, need for features, and the device used – all play their own role in the decision.
Ans: Scribd, Blinkist, and Bookbeat provide truly unlimited access to audiobooks at a single flat fee.
Ans: Though, with Prime membership, you may get 2 free credits, but ultimately you will have to pay to access the full Audible library.
Ans: Netflix does not have audiobooks. But you may use its audio description feature to listen to the shows and movies, like in an audiobook.
Ans: Scribd is the best audiobook subscription gift, due to its unlimited audio & e-book access, large library, and reasonable prices.
Ans: Audiobook subscription cancellation can easily be done by going to the settings menu in your audiobook app.
Ans: You may easily find an audiobook narrator job at UpWork, ACX, Voices, Fiverr, and Voquent.