Monday, May 16, 2022

How to listen to audiobooks with an Amazon Kindle

Your Kindle provides more than one way to devour a good book. If you own a set of Bluetooth headphones or a Bluetooth-enabled speaker, you’ve got everything you need to start enjoying audiobooks streamed from your Kindle eReader (we review the best Kindles). Let’s get started!

Introducing Audible, Amazon’s audiobook business

If you have even a passing interest in audiobooks, you’ll likely have heard of Audible. If not, here’s your chance to get acquainted.

Founded in the mid-1990s, Audible is, arguably, one of the largest purveyors of audiobooks and other aural consumables in the world. While there are a number of ways to enjoy Audible content, including smartphone and tablet apps or on your computer via Audible’s website, this guide focuses on how to do so with your Amazon Kindle eReader.

Amazon’s found a way to make switching from reading an eBook to listening to an audiobook a nearly seamless experience. Thanks to Whispersync for Voice, many of the books available to buy via the Amazon Kindle Store can be synced with their audio iteration, purchased from Audible. So, when you stop reading your Kindle to head to work, Amazon’s Whispersync for Voice service will ensure that the Audible version of what you were reading picks up where you left off. Of course, you’ll have to pay for this privilege by investing in both the eBook and the audiobook from Amazon.

Buying Audible books with your Amazon account

While it’s still possible to buy narrated books and other narrated content directly from Audible’s website, Kindle owners can use their Amazon account to buy Audio books via Amazon’s web store. There are a few ways to do this.

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The choice to invest in an Audible subscription or to buy your audiobooks without one should be dictated by how much you read and how much you want to listen to.

The first is to navigate to the Audible section of Amazon’s website. After signing into your Amazon account, click the Departments button, located underneath the search bar at the top of your Amazon homepage. A drop-down menu will appear. Halfway down, you’ll see the Books and Audible option. Scrolling over this option will open up a submenu. At the bottom you’ll find two options: Audible Membership and Audible Audiobooks.

At the time that this guide was written, an Audible subscription cost $14.95 per month, with one free month up front. During this trial period, Amazon will hook you up with two free audiobooks. If you decide to cancel your subscription at the end of the one-month trial, the audiobooks are yours to keep.

An Audible subscription will net you one free audiobook per month, regardless of its cost. In addition, you’ll receive a 30% discount on any audio content you buy from Audible. Finally—and this may be the best membership perk of all—Amazon will let you swap out any Audible books you’re not enjoying for free. If you listen to books less frequently, it’s also possible to buy Audible books and magazines a la carte.


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