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Thursday, November 30th
Libro is an audiobook platform that partners with independent bookstores, sharing revenue from each purchase and supporting local communities. They offer a DRM-free model, allowing users to listen to their audiobooks however they want. Users can choose the indie bookstore they want to support when they make a purchase, and for every purchase, the store receives 15% of what was spent. Memberships cost $14.99 per month and come with one credit for an audiobook of the user's choice, with a 30% discount on additional purchases. Libro offers promotions, a sale category for discounted titles, and playlists curated by indie bookstores. They recently expanded internationally, and their platform is a great choice for those who want to support small businesses and value ethical spending.
Downpour is an audiobook service that offers everything from interactive choose-your-own-adventure audiobooks to hardcovers and paperbacks. Their library includes over 80,000 audiobook titles, with new ones being added regularly. Downpour offers a single subscription plan that includes one credit per month for $12.99 and lets you try it for free for 30 days. You can also rent titles for 30-60 days if you don't want to own them outright. Downpour is committed to letting customers listen to their audiobooks however they want, with no DRM restrictions. They're known for their excellent customer service and ethical business practices.
The world of audiobooks has seen huge growth over the past decade, with industry surveys showing a double-digit increase for ten years in a row with no signs of slowing down. Various platforms for listening to audiobooks have popped up, each one catering to different user needs, budgets, and preferences.
The recent boom in the popularity of audiobooks can be attributed to a few different factors, but one of the biggest reasons is how well they fit into our busy, multitasking lives. You can listen while you're commuting, working out, or even doing household chores like folding the laundry. It's a great way to access intellectually engaging entertainment while getting some drudgery done.
And, thanks to technological advancements, it's easier than ever to access audiobooks. It used to be that you had to confine yourself to a room with a CD player to listen to an audiobook, but now, anyone with a smartphone has thousands of audiobooks available at their fingertips. Plus, as audiobooks have grown in popularity, so has their production quality.
Audiobook narrators aren't merely reciting the words on the e-reader in front of them in the recording booth; they are acting out the story. Accomplished actors and seasoned voice artists can bring stories to life, adding an auditory dimension to characters and settings that can sometimes rival or surpass the imagination. Narrators are often chosen because the story resonates with them personally, adding an extra layer of emotion to the performance and making it feel more human.
For those apprehensive about putting on their headphones instead of picking up a book, it's worth addressing some common misconceptions about audiobooks. Contrary to the belief that listening to a book is "cheating" or less intellectually engaging than reading, many studies show that the comprehension levels between reading and listening are strikingly similar. What's more, audiobooks can be particularly beneficial for those with reading difficulties, allowing them to enjoy literature they might otherwise struggle with. They are not a replacement for traditional reading but rather a complementary medium, broadening the horizons of literary engagement.
When it comes to audiobook services, there are several types to choose from. First, there are library-based services which partner with local libraries to allow users to digitally borrow audiobooks. Much like a traditional library, you can "check out" titles for a specific time frame using your library card. However, be mindful that sought-after titles might have waiting lists. Another option is subscription-based services. With a recurring fee, usually monthly, users can access a broad range of audiobooks. Depending on the service, you might get a set number of credits to pick audiobooks each month or even enjoy unlimited listening. Lastly, there are pay-per-title services where, rather than a subscription, you buy each audiobook separately. While there's no monthly commitment, the upfront cost for each audiobook can be higher. The upside is that you typically get to keep the audiobook forever once you've bought it.
When deciding on the right audiobook service, several considerations can help guide your decision:
If you want a detailed overview of the best audiobook services out there, Top Consumer Reviews has your back. We trust our ranked evaluations will guide you to the audiobook platform that best matches your listening habits and lifestyle!
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Thu, 16 Nov 2023