Kindle Unlimited Audiobooks: Expectations Vs. Reality

It’s called Kindle Unlimited simply because it has a 6 million+ collection of eBooks. It has a 200,000 collection of audiobooks alone. But then again, there are prominent rivals like the Audible.

So, a reality check on Kindle unlimited audiobooks is necessary. In this article, you will get what are the common limitation of Kindle and how it differentiates from Audible. Stay tuned!

Kindle Unlimited Audiobooks Vs. Audible

It will make more sense if you compare it with Audible hand in hand. Yes, they are both owned by Amazon. Jeff Bezos played a neat game here! But there are some fundamental differences between the two.

1.Ownership of Audiobooks

First, whatever you get from Kindle unlimited, you never own them forever. It works like a library. Meaning, you will have to return it sooner or later. 

Anytime you cancel your Kindle subscription, you will have to return all the audiobook titles you have borrowed including all the eBooks.

But you can keep your Audible audiobooks forever. You own them! You can cancel your subscription anytime you want and still, you will own all of your purchased audiobooks.

This is a big deal if you are a serious audiobook lover and you love to listen to the old audiobooks again and again. I do! I love to listen to the same audiobook again and again that I love. 

Besides, if you own the titles, you can share it with your friends and family. 

2.A Flavor Only

If you get a Kindle Unlimited subscription, you will get access to a few audiobooks from Audible. So, some book lovers get confused and keep wondering whether they will get access to Audible audiobooks if they get a Kindle Unlimited subscription.

But as you can see, you will get access to a few of the audiobooks from the Audible only. You will never get access to the full Audible catalog with your Kindle subscription.

It’s more like a free trial feature of Audible. And whenever you cancel your Kindle subscription, you will have to return all the audiobooks too.

3.Costing: Behind The Curtain Look

A common misconception of Kindle Unlimited subscription is that it’s cheaper than Audible. It’s somewhat true if you look at the cost only! For only $9.99, you can get a Kindle subscription whereas an Audible Premium Plus membership will cost you $14.95. 

Most books on the Kindle platform will cost you $0.99 to borrow. So, with just a $9.99 subscription, you can check out with 10 titles. On the other hand, you will have to spend $10 worth of credits just buy a single audiobook from Audible.

The most important thing to keep in mind that, you are just borrowing the titles from Kindle. But as an Audible subscriber, you are actually buying it to keep the title with you forever!

If you are a true audiobook fan, it’s more like comparing apple with an orange. The vast collection of Audible audiobooks is no match for the tiny collection of audiobooks of Kindle.

Besides, don’t forget the ownership issue! More so, there are less costing subscription system in Audible. E.g., you can get a $7.95 Audible Plus membership plan and still access to more collection of audiobooks than Kindle.

Just for the $7.95 Audible Plus membership, you will get access to 9,000+ free audiobooks. But for the Kindle Unlimited, there will be more or less 2,000 free audiobooks to access freely.

4.Audiobooks Catalog

Imagine the name of any of your favorite audiobooks and I am 100% sure you will find it in Audible NOT in Kindle. So, Audible is second to none when it comes to the vast collection of audiobooks. It’s a sin to compare it with Kindle Unlimited.

You see, in Kindle Unlimited subscription, you will get access to a tiny fraction of Audible audiobooks. What’s worse is that most of such audiobooks are self-published.

So, you can forget about getting your favorite audiobooks from the Kindle Unlimited audiobooks collection.

And there are some Audible Originals and exclusive collections which you will never see if you only have a Kindle subscription. In fact, a Kindle subscriber will never know about such an original collection.

5.Library Limitations

Another clear distinction between Kindle Unlimited audiobooks vs. Audible is the depth of your library.

Let’s get to the point straight. You can’t hold 10 titles at once in your Kindle Unlimited plan. Yes, it’s highly unlikely that you will be enjoying more than 10 books at a time, but this is where it makes all the difference when it comes to Audible.

Imagine you are long away from your home on your vacation and you have only 10 books with you. That’s kind of feeling is not super cool for many book lovers.

I may not read or listen to all the books in the world during the vacation, but I love to have them all during such time.

You see, no matter which membership plan you have in Audible, your library will always show all the audiobooks you purchase. You can download them to listen offline too which is something you can’t do with your Kindle plan.

6.Quality Over Quantity

The quality of the Kindle Unlimited audiobooks is no match for the quality of the Audible audiobooks. In fact, any serious bookworm will be disappointed with the quality of the audiobooks available on the Kindle platform. 

The reason is pretty simple why the quality is not up to the mark on the Kindle platform. Publishing any books (including audiobooks) is fairly easy there. A lot of independent authors just publish their own books. There is not much quality assurance process.

The quality control in the Audible platform is pretty strict. Lots of processes are there to be followed before any new audiobook is released. From sound engineer to the editor, there are professionals everywhere. 

Often, the narrators are of top-notch quality. Audible hires from the Hollywood actors sometimes too as their narrators! Sometimes, the original authors give a voice to the audiobooks. Imagine, the author is reading the book to you!

My Take On Kindle Unlimited Audiobooks

Whatever audiobooks you see on the Kindle platform are actually a tiny portion of Audible. Since both of them are owned by Amazon, I personally consider this a marketing stance.

Undoubtedly, Kindle has the largest reader base if you compare it with Audible subscribers. What Amazon is trying to bring some of them to their Audible platform too. That’s why Kindle readers are often tempted to listen to some free audiobooks.

When such readers start to love audiobooks, a lot of them eventually will convert to Audible audiobook subscribers too. Again, this is just my own understanding. You may see it differently. 

If you are already an Audible subscriber, there is nothing to see in the Kindle platform’s audiobook. Of course, if you want to try some eBooks, you are welcome to give it a try.

But if you love audiobooks and you have never tried Audible, skip Kindle! Audible is the only place to quench your thirst for audiobooks. 

Your Question My Answer

How much are Kindle unlimited audiobooks?

It’s free! Well, you will have to pay $9.99 as your subscription fee and you can borrow as many books as you want. That feature comes with free audiobooks too.

Can you keep the books on Kindle Unlimited after Cancelling?

No. You will have to return all the borrowed books. That’s because you are actually not buying those books, you are just borrowing with a subscription fee of $9.99.

Is audible the same as Kindle Unlimited?

No. Whereas both of them are owned by the same Amazon but they offer different services to their subscribers. Kindle Unlimited is for eBooks readers but Audible is for audiobook listeners. 

How do I get audiobooks on Kindle Unlimited?

Some eBooks on the Kindle platform come with voice narration. So, if you see any headphone icon next to the Kindle Unlimited logo, that’s how you know it has the audiobook version too.

Does Kindle Unlimited include audiobooks?

Yes. It comes with almost 2,000+ Audible audiobooks too for free. These books are WhisperSync enabled; so you can seamlessly read and listen. It’s nothing but a marketing strategy of Amazon so that you become a loyal subscriber of Audible too!

Does Kindle Unlimited give access to all books?

You will get access to millions of titles including thousands of free Audible audiobooks but NOT all of them. Sure, you will have access to all the best-selling books out there.

Which is better Kindle Unlimited or Audible?

Bookworms who just love to read should prefer the Kindle Unlimited over Audible. But if you just want to listen to high-quality audiobooks, Audible is second to none.

Sum Up

The word ‘unlimited’ may sound exciting when you hear the term Kindle Unlimited audiobooks. But for genuine audiobook worms, it’s no match for Audible. Of course, it still the best platform for eBooks. It’s not just great for the audiobook.

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