When ebooks debuted about two decades ago, tech pundits were screaming from the rooftops that ebooks would replace physical books. But while the internet and digital media has replaced some physical media, print books have hung on remarkably well.
That’s not to say ebooks aren’t popular. Hardly. Matter of fact, you’re as likely to see someone reading an ebook today as you are a print book. Amazon is largely to thank for that. Its Kindle ebook platform is the most powerful player on the scene. But while you can buy individual Kindle ebooks, the company also has a service called Kindle Unlimited.
If you’re a big ebook fan, Kindle Unlimited could be just your thing. Here’s what you need to know.
Kindle Unlimited Is Amazon’s ‘Netflix For Books’
In short, Kindle Unlimited is Amazon’s Netflix for books. That’ means it’s a digital subscription service, but instead of getting access to streaming video, you get access to a massive digital book library.
Kindle Unlimited debuted in 2014 with about 630,000 ebooks available to subscribers. As of today, there are over 1 million ebooks available on Kindle Unlimited. However, do note that just because Amazon sells a Kindle edition of a book, it doesn’t mean that book will be available on Kindle Unlimited.
How Do You Use Kindle Unlimited?
Of the books that are available on Kindle Unlimited, you can download and save 10 ebooks to a device at any one time. If you want to read another ebook, you’ll need to erase one of the ten from your existing device. Amazon does this so people can’t just keep and store hundreds of thousands of ebooks on their devices.
Once a book is downloaded to your device, you access it in the Kindle app on that device just like you would any normal Kindle book.
Does Kindle Unlimited Include Media Besides Ebooks?
Yes. Kindle Unlimited actually includes more than just ebooks. Kindle Unlimited also gives users access to audiobooks and magazines. Thousands of audiobooks are available via Kindle Unlimited, so if that’s your thing, you’ll have plenty to listen to.
As for magazines, Kindle Unlimited gives you access to the latest magazines. This means Kindle Unlimited isn’t only a good service for book lovers–but for magazine lovers too.
How Much does Kindle Unlimited Cost?
Amazon gives users a few options for Kindle Unlimited:
- Free trial: first is the free trial. If you haven’t used Kindle Unlimited before, Amazon gives all users a 30-day free trial where you can access everything the service has to offer. After the free trial ends, you’ll be billed the normal monthly fee, unless you cancel first.
- Monthly subscription: the Kindle Unlimited service costs $9.99 a month. This gets you access to all the services ebooks, audiobooks, and magazines. You’ll be charged $9.99 a month until you cancel. However, Amazon occasionally has deals for first-time subscribers. For example, sometimes they’ll offer new subscribers two months of Kindle Unlimited for only $0.99, with the subscription costing $9.99 a month after that.
What Devices Does Kindle Unlimited Work On?
The good news is you do not need to own a Kindle device to use Kindle Unlimited. You can definitely access all of Kindle Unlimited’s media on any Kindle, but Kindle hardware is not required. All you need is a Kindle app on the device of your choice.
Kindle Unlimited is supported on the following devices:
- Android phones
- Android tablets
How Do I Get Kindle Unlimited?
You’ll first need an Amazon account. After that, you can sign up for Kindle Unlimited here.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is Kindle Unlimited free for Prime members?
Unfortunately not. Kindle Unlimited is not included in an Amazon Prime membership. Prime members will need to pay $9.99 per month if they want to access Kindle Unlimited.
Q: What do you get with Kindle Unlimited?
You get access to millions of ebooks as well as audiobooks and magazines. You can store up to ten ebooks on any compatible device at a time.
Q: How much does Kindle Unlimited cost?
Kindle Unlimited offers a free 30-day trial. After the trial period expires, Kindle Unlimited costs $9.99 per month.
Apple expert and novelist, Michael Grothaus has been covering tech on KnowYourMobile for the best part of 10 years. Prior to this, he worked at Apple. And before that, he was a film journalist. Michael is a published author; his book Epiphany Jones was voted as one of the best novels about Hollywood by Entertainment Weekly. Michael is also a writer at other publications including VICE and Fast Company.