Amazon is now officially the “Netflix-for-books” service, announcing Friday the launch of Kindle Unlimited.
For $9.99 per month, you get access to 600,000 Kindle books and “thousands” of audio books if you join Kindle Unlimited.
It’s somewhat like having he public library at your fingertips via your smartphone or tablet. Local libraries offer ebooks for free that sync with Kindle. But Amazon’s service is broader in scope and easier to use.
With Amazon’s vast reservoir of titles, the online retail giant has little competition.
Here’s an excerpt from Amazon’s press release: “Customers can choose from best sellers like The Hunger Games, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, and The Lord of the Rings, and with thousands of professionally narrated audiobooks from Audible, like The Handmaid’s Tale and Water for Elephants, the story can continue in the car or on the go.”
In addition to access to 600,000 e-books, Kindle Unlimited offers:
Unlimited listening: Access more than 2,000 audiobooks from Audible with Whispersync for Voice, and you can switch between reading and listening. Here are titles referenced by Amazon in its press release: Hunger Games trilogy, Life of Pi, The Handmaid’s Tale, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, The Great Santini, The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat, Winter’s Tale, Boardwalk Empire, El Narco, Upstairs at the White House: My Life with the First Ladies, Merle’s Door: Lessons from a Freethinking Dog, The Finisher, Johnny Carson, The Stranger I Married, and Life Code.
Kindle exclusives: Choose from hundreds of thousands of books only found on Kindle, including Brilliance by Marcus Sakey, The Hangman’s Daughter series by Oliver Pötzsch, War Brides by Helen Bryan, Ed McBain’s 87th Precinct and Matthew Hope books, When I Found You by Catherine Ryan Hyde, Whiskey Sour by J.A. Konrath, Chasing Shadows by CJ Lyons, and Sick by Brett Battles.
Short Reads: Select from thousands of books that are 100 pages or less, including Kindle Singles from Stephen King, Andy Borowitz, and Nelson DeMille, and short fiction from Amazon Publishing’s StoryFront imprint.
Free three-month Audible membership: In addition to the thousands of professionally narrated audiobooks from Audible included in Kindle Unlimited, subscribers get a complimentary three-month Audible membership, with access to more than 150,000 titles.
Popular Kindle features: These include Whispersync, Popular Highlights, X-Ray, customer reviews, and Goodreads integration.
Read and listen everywhere: Access across Kindle devices and free Kindle reading apps for iPhone, iPad, Android tablets and phones, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, PC, Mac and Windows 8—so you always have your library with you and never lose your place.