Audiobooks have become a thing for many book lovers in recent years. It’s mostly because of the convenience and comfort, drawing people to give it a try. Truth be told, reading with your ears is no different compared to reading with your eyes. If you are looking for where to start your audiobook journey, you have come to the right place. We have curated a list to help you choose the best audiobook app to try.
Audiobooks can either be a separate app or an in-app service by a library provider. This development in the way we can digest our favorite books has become a redeeming service for those who can’t seem to squeeze a minute or two to hold a physical book or ebook.
How to Access Audiobooks?
Audiobooks can be a separate app service or an in-app service. If you have a Kindle Paperwhite, Audible, Amazon’s audiobook service, comes as an in-app service. However, most audiobook apps are separate services from ebook libraries.
Most audiobook services are available for download on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. Additionally, most of these audiobook services offer a month’s worth of free trial before the app asks the users to get a premium subscription for them to have continuous access to their library.
20 Best Audiobook Apps to Try
Audiobooks are great tools to have for when you want to listen to your favorite titles while on a long drive or just chilling in the living room on a boring weekend. Below are the best audiobook apps we recommend.
1. Audible by Amazon
Similar to its counterparts (Kindle Library and its main library), Amazon Audible has a good library for audiobooks. Audible is supported by newer versions of Kindle Paperwhite. For the most part, Audible comes free for a month before one has to start paying a monthly premium of $14.95. Books can be purchased in various ways; one is through credits. Each month, an Audible user gets credits that can be used to buy audiobooks. Another way is to buy a title using your credit card. Find your next best read through Amazon Audible now!
Scribd is undoubtedly the easy runner-up app to Audible. For just $9 per month, one can easily gain access to some of the best titles narrated by notable narrators to bring the book to life. Scribd has a good library of British mystery titles and serious non-fiction. Some users have reported some limitations in accessing titles but that’s the extent of the negative reviews one can come up with when using Scribd.
Coming third on our list is another paid-subscription audiobook. Audiobooks.com has a premium library that houses 200,000 titles with genres ranging from (but not limited to) romance, thrillers, and young adult. Audiobooks.com checks the boxes that make up some of the best audiobook apps despite some reports pertaining to the ability to jump right into a specific chapter. This feature is something users can do before it was omitted. Nonetheless, this is still a good audiobook service that brings the best titles to you.
Hoopla’s library is a good place to get your favorite titles; it has a good collection of novels in ebooks, comics, movies, and music. Accessing Hoopla is easy if your library comes with a subscription. In which case, you can use your library card to access Hoopla’s impressive library. Despite the limitations that some libraries impose in terms of the number of checkouts per month, it is still a free service for anyone who wishes to get their hands (or ears) to the hottest titles today.
LibriVox is a good place to look for titles that are not necessarily bestsellers. These titles are found in the public domain and are read by volunteers; titles that range from classic to out-of-print ones. Users can even choose the edition of the book available in their catalog if a narrator is not doing the book any justice. Access to titles are unlimited; unlimited saves and bookmark make this one of the best audiobook apps.
6. Apple Books
As is with any other Apple products, Apple Books has a pro and a con. Pro, it comes pre-installed on every Apple device. Con, one has to spend to get access to an audiobook. Nonetheless, it has an impressive library and great deals from time to time. Your library can be synced with other Apple devices, meaning access to your Apple Books library is not a problem. The best features of this app include the ability to control audio playback, set a sleep timer, and play through a speaker. And if it is not yet obvious, this is only available to Apple devices.
Downpour is not similar to the other audiobook apps we have listed in this article. This is an audiobook rental app where users can rent a book and have access to that title. After the rental period has been consumed, the book disappears from a user’s library. This is particularly appealing for those who wish to save mobile storage space. The price of $12.99 per month for one title might come as unappealing for some. Nonetheless, it is a good option for audiobooks with a good catalog of books for rent.
Libby combines several services into one app; it is a digital media management app, ebook reader, and audiobook player. What makes it the best audiobook app is it comes for a handsome price — it’s free. It competes with Hoopla in terms of accessibility of titles from local libraries; similar to Hoopla, one can use his/her library card to access the app and get access to ebooks and audiobooks. Some users report the app crashes following a recent update but so far that’s the extent of negative reviews can cover. Libby is an Editor’s Choice Award app on the Apple App Store.
For anyone looking for daily book deals, eStories is the place to be. Users can enjoy one audiobook per month for a price of $11.99 — a cheap price compared to other audiobook apps we have listed in this article. Its library teems with genre extending from young adult, fiction, non-fiction, to textbooks. Some Android users have reported difficulties in casting the audiobook to Android TV and sometimes sound would not come out. Nonetheless, it works great on mobile. Score the bestselling romance titles or non-fiction titles today with eStories.
More than just a streaming service for music and podcast, Spotify has finally joined the bandwagon of streaming services that offer audiobooks for free. Its current library is quite limited in this regard and can only offer audiobooks for classic books and works that are categorized as under the public domain.
OverDrive is responsible for bringing the physical library directly to our homes through a digital app. It is the mind behind Libby and follows a similar approach employed by Hoopla. To put it simply, OverDrive is a digital management app that allows anyone to borrow titles from a physical library if the library has a subscription service for its users. Users can then use their library cards to get access to the titles available in their catalog. And if you haven’t guessed it yet, their service is free.
12. Bound – Cloud Audiobooks
Bound is an app that not only offers audiobook streaming but also revolutionizes the way we consume our favorite titles. This app saves us from having storage capacity problems, which we would encounter when downloading or buying titles from audiobook apps because this is a cloud-based streaming app. Any user with this audiobook app will have the ability to stream Digital Rights Management (DRM)-free audiobooks from cloud storage apps like OneDrive, Dropbox, or Google Drive. It also supports streaming files with .mp3, .m4a, .m4b, and .aac file extensions. One downside of this app would be, it is only available for iOS devices.
13. Kobo Books
Kobo Books is another paid subscription audiobook app. It is a household name for bringing one of the best services when it comes to digital book reading. And it has cemented its place further by joining the audiobook arena. It is also one of the cheapest audiobook subscriptions; for only $9.99 per month, users can enjoy Kobo’s digital library that also offers ebooks of various genres. Users can enjoy a free trial run for 30 days before they get to decide whether the $9.99 per month is worth it. Give it a try!
14. Google Play Books
In response to Apple’s entry into the audiobook arena, Google Play has also made available its version of the ebook library. The main difference between Apple Books and Google Play Books is that the latter’s availability to iOS users, giving them an option to toy around. The rest remains similar in terms of title distribution. Other points of difference are title distribution, pricing, and cross-platform compatibility. In some reports, Google Play Books lead the race because it has more partnerships and deals and promotions with book stores to make titles available.
15. NOOK Audiobooks
Barnes & Noble, a brick-and-mortar physical bookstore, is bringing its titles on an audiobook library aptly called NOOK Audiobooks. It employs a pay-as-you-listen mechanism, where you buy the titles you want to gain access to. Technically speaking, the app is free-to-use that allows you to browse audiobooks you can eventually buy. Titles sold from the physical store with audiobook version are also available via the app. NOOK Audiobooks contents are purchased from a specific channel and not from Barnes and Noble website or NOOK Shop.
16. Audiobooks Now
Audiobooks Now is another option for those looking for the best audiobook app that is paid but will not puncture a hole into your wallet per month. The app offers a 30-day free trial of its service, giving anyone access to its digital contents boasting 80,000 titles. After the trial period expires, if you’re convinced Audiobooks Now is a good audiobook app, a monthly premium will cost you $4.99, which is not bad for anyone who likes to listen to their books narrated to them but on a budget.
Chirp might come as just another audiobook store app where you can stream them as well. But its claim to fame is beyond the usual boxes ticked for an audiobook app. Chirp offers a selection of titles readers can seal a deal for, with prices skewing from $1.99 to $4.99. What’s more, is you own what you bought and can be streamed offline through the app. If that ain’t enough to entice you to try this app, we don’t know what will. You might just score a bestseller at half the price!
18. Serial Box
Serial Box allows users to devour audiobook novels in chunks or episodes, perfect when you are commuting or killing any doldrums. Users can enjoy episodic takes of an epic novel; the first episode comes for free while succeeding ones are paid $1.99 per episode. Its library ranges from drama to fantasy and sci-fi. We’d like to recommend this app for fans of Marvel Comic Universe or Star Wars, which are perfect for episodic consumption. Speaking of which, this can be just the best audiobook app for action-junky readers.
19. Bookmobile Audiobook Player
Bookmobile Audiobook Player is a highly-regarded audiobook player for iOS devices. Users can stream DRM-free content from Audible, iTunes, or ripped from CDs or downloaded contents through this app. It is perfect for anyone who is up for a long ride and wants to devour a book through its Drive Mode feature. For just $3.99, anyone can enjoy all the perks this app has to offer.
20. Smart AudioBook Player
Wrapping our list of audiobook apps is a paid subscription that is affordable for everyone. If iOS users have Bookmobile as the top choice for streaming DRM-free content, Smart AudioBook Player is the top choice among Android device users. This app checks the boxes of features that make up an ideal audiobook, including playback control and sleep mode. Get to enjoy your best reads after a 30-day trial for only $1.99!
What’s Your Best Audiobook App?
Choosing the right app can be a little difficult — there are considerations of course. Pricing, for one, is the main consideration with title availability coming next. Whatever your considerations are, it is wise to choose the app that offers the best value for the money and comfort of the app. It should be fairly easy for anyone to access the app and navigate through it. In addition, books should be narrated in a way that is enticing and not prone to snoozefest while driving.
Nonetheless, we hope this article will help you shop for the best audiobook app for you! Let us know what you got from the store.