Last week on #IndieChat we discussed the pros and cons of ebook subscriptions.
eBook subscriptions are a great way for avid readers to pay one monthly fee and get access to millions of current eBooks in the market. Whether its unlimited access, or even just a few books a month, the pros and cons of book subscriptions continues to be argued amongst readers and authors. Below are a few of the top currently used eBook subscription sites, including a chart at the bottom to help compare and make your own assessment:
Scribd book subscription is a digital personal library that gives unlimited access to the world’s largest collection of e-books and other written works. The premium subscription service for 8.99/month offers unlimited access to over 400,000 books from over 900 publishers. The subscription can be accessed through iOS and Android, and once your subscription ends you are not allowed to keep access to your books. You can download books to read anywhere, even online, and you are allowed a free trial to test out the subscription.
Also has access to over 500,000 titles. The subscription offers unlimited access to any book in the library, and the last ten titles downloaded are stored for offline reading. It is available for all devices Android 4+ and iOS 7+, which includes Samsung devices, iPhone 4 and up, iPad 2, iPad mini, iPad Air, iPad Touch (5th gen), Nook HD, and Kindle Fire. The subscription is 9.95/month for general subscription and can be accessed through iOS, Android, and Kindle Fire. You are not allowed to keep the books if you cancel your subscription, but you are allowed to test out a free trial before purchasing the subscription. The only negative for this subscription, is that it is only available for purchase in the United States, with a US based credit card. The website can be accessed while abroad, but can lead to major data-roaming charges.
This subscription gives access to two ebooks/month for a general subscription of 9.99/month. Other subscriptions include three ebooks for 14.99/month or 24 ebooks for 99/year. The subscription offers access to over 200,000 ebooks/month and contains offline and online reading for the iPhone, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, Nook, and Kobo. There are a few useful tools on the site including the reader selecting two books, and the site selecting a new favorite read for you based on your selections. Another tool includes curated collections that subscribers can choose from. There is a recommendation station that recommends ebooks based on your reading history, and an advanced search tool that is great for searching any available ebook on the site. Two great extra factors include the gift subscription option where a person can buy and send a subscription to a friend, and after cancellation of the subscription subscribers are allowed to keep their already selected ebooks.
As the newest book subscription service, Kindle Unlimited offers unlimited ebook reading, with a choice of over 600,000 titles, for 9.99/month. It offers a free 3 day trial, and can be cancelled at any time with no cancellation fees. In addition to free reading, the subscription offers thousands of free audio books to accompany many of its readable ebooks. With the purchase of a subscription, subscribers receive a complimentary three month membership to Audible, and with access to more than 150,000 titles. Another great aspect of the subscription is that it can be read on any device, so long as the free Kindle app is downloaded. It is also available on and offline.
To narrow this all down more easily, here is a helpful chart: