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Is It Time To Subscribe To An eBook Service?

Tuesday, January 20th, 2015 by | Filed Under: eReaders, Multimedia

Subscription eBook services really seem to be taking off and the addition of some new publishers with thousands of titles to Kindle Unlimited competitors Oyster and Scribd mean readers have more choice than ever.

Subscription eBook services work much Netflix or a streaming radio subscription. Instead of buying the book, you pay for an all-you-can-read subscription service that lets select from a large variety of books. These service run around $10 per month with Amazon charging $10 for Kindle Unlimited, Oyster $10 and Scribe costing $9 monthly.

Oyster and Scribd have each struck deals with the publisher Macmillian, adding a huge number of titles to the service. Some big-name publishers like Penguin aren’t keen on this concept. It’s much the same conflict you see about streaming services like Spotify and Pandora in the music businesses.

Kindle Unlimited boasts a library of over 700,000 eBooks and thousands of audiobooks and offers unlimited reading and listening. You aren’t just limited to reading on a Kindle, you can download an app and enjoy you subscription on a PC, Mac, tablet or smartphone.


Oyster offers more than 500,000 titles and can also be accessed from Android and iOS devices with an app or via your browser.


Scribd also offers over 500,000 titles with unlimited reading and listening.


Kindle Unlimited and Scribd  each offer a free 30 day trial, while Oyster will give you 6 months of free reading to find out if the services work for you.

If you read several new titles a month, a subscription service could be a good value for you. But one of the best deals out there is right from your local library, using services like OverDrive and Hoopla, which cost dollars a month, you can access eBooks, audio books and even movies using your library card.

Unlike the subscription services, you do have to wait your turn for books and movies because libraries are only allowed so many digital copies  to loan out and like a physical library book, there is usually a limit on how long you can keep the item out on loan. You might also have to wait awhile for newer titles to be available, but the price tag is hard to beat.

No matter which service you choose, there will an amazing variety of books available instantly at your fingertips.

~ Cynthia

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