In this Google Play Books review, we’ll discuss the features, pros, and cons of Google’s audiobook and ebook service provider. After a thorough analysis, we’ve decided to share the test results with anyone searching for audiobooks.
You’ll find information about the app’s interface, properties, pricing, and policies. Then, we’ll compare it to its competitors and reveal its online reputation. Finally, you’ll see our answers to the most frequently asked questions about Google Play Books at the bottom.
It’s time to scroll down and see for yourself whether this is the app tailored for you.
Pros & Cons
Google Play Books Review — Features and Materials
Google Play Books has existed for over a decade as a part of Google Play’s product collection. It enables users with active Google accounts to buy, download, and rent ebooks and audiobooks. Moreover, although Google Play Books operates internationally, it’s not available in every single country.
Additionally, it offers comics, manga, and textbooks. In fact, Google Play Books is not a subscription-based platform, which grants flexibility to users. Moreover, you can use it on your computer and mobile browser, on iOS and Android devices, and as a Chrome extension.
Besides, you can download lots of audio files from Google Play Books free of charge. This library stores approximately 5 million ebooks and audiobooks.
There are new releases, celebrity authors, classics, and poems from 17 different categories. Abridged and auto-narrated books are among them as well. Moreover, free samples let you get a notion of the book in question before you purchase it.
What’s more, your progress is synced across devices; if you pause the audiobook on one device, you can continue listening to it on another. Furthermore, some books come with additional PDF files, maps, charts, and similar, which you can download.
In addition, you can upload Audiobooks to Google Play. However, this feature applies to ebooks only, and the same goes for printing. So, exporting audio files is possible, but not for every book.
Google Play Books also allows you to pre-order ebooks and audiobooks. Still, some features are country-specific; i.e., only Japan-based users can subscribe to a book series.
Then, you can send Google Play gifts by email only to someone registered for Google Play in the same country as you. After this brief overview of the service, we will tell you something more about how it works on desktop and mobile devices.
Google Play Books for PC Review
As we’ve already mentioned, you can explore, buy, and download audiobooks on your computer. First, you need to open Google Play Books, go to the Shop, and select a title. You can also play the sample before settling on a book to ensure it’s the right choice.
Once you download it, you can listen to it on multiple devices. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to share accounts and content. However, as long as you log in with the same account, you can pick up right where you left off.
Another convenient feature this Google Play Books review will tell you about is the audio file export. You can do it by using your computer only. However, not every book is available for export.
That’s why you need to check the additional information section for each book. Here, you’ll also see if some extra files, graphs, or maps come with the book. The types of audiobooks you’ll discover are abridged and auto-narrated.
When it comes to ebooks, you can buy and read those on your computer as well. In addition, you can rent them. The Google Play store audiobooks have different rental periods and prices; you can verify that data next to the cover.
Although there are limits on how much you can print from some ebooks, you can still take advantage of this option after downloading them. In addition, what makes Google Play Books pleasant to use are customizable viewing options.
If you prefer to read an ebook offline in the form of the original version, you can change the display settings to match the printed edition. Or you can modify the font, text size, line spacing, and similar.
Google Play Books App Review
The app is free for all Android and iOS devices; you’ll find it in the respective app stores. You can launch this app on your Android phone or tablet and explore the audiobook library. Unlike on iPhones and iPads, you can also purchase them.
However, iOS users can open Google Play Books in Safari and shop there. It’s beneficial that the app enables you to download files using Wi-Fi only. You can turn on this option in the Play Books settings.
The Google Play Books app lets you download and listen to books on any device. However, it can’t play audiobooks in the background. Also, you can’t print or export files from the app.
The buying and reading ebook conditions are the same on Android and iOS devices. In fact, you can buy, download, rent, and read them. Furthermore, the dark mode makes reading much more comfortable. The app is available for devices running on Android 10 and up and iOS 13 and up.
Ease of Use
The app featuring audiobooks on Google Play borrows its interface from the Google Play store itself. So, anyone used to it won’t have problems managing this app. Furthermore, it’s pretty logical and ordered, and a Google account is the only requirement.
Once you select the title you like, you need to click the Buy button, and that’s it. Thanks to the simplified, user-friendly interface, it’s easy even for people unfamiliar with the Google Play store.
Plans and Pricing — Do I Need a Google Play Books Subscription?
Google Play Books doesn’t have subscription plans. Instead, it has a pay-per-book pricing model. In addition, it hosts free content. Its users can buy and rent audiobooks in browsers and the Android app.
Unfortunately, you can’t buy or rent audio files within the app on iPhones and iPads. However, you can access the website using Safari on these devices and purchase audiobooks. Then, you can go back to the Google Play Books app and listen to them on any device, including those running on iOS.
Whether you’re eligible for a refund on Google Play audiobooks depends on where you bought them. The company has clearly stated that all sales are final except in the case of South Korean customers.
Apparently, they have the right to request a refund within seven days of the purchase, but only if they haven’t started listening to the audiobook. Still, anyone can ask for a refund if the audiobook doesn’t work.
Knowing how influential Google is, it’s no wonder Google Play Books have reached so many people. As a result, we’ve been able to find many user testimonials. In fact, the Google Play Books app has a 4.1/5 rating on the Google Play store.
The users’ satisfaction stems from the high-quality digital reading experience. They love the book selection and how little space they need. Moreover, this app relieves stress because it shows them personalized recommendations based on previous choices.
The iOS users have given Google Play Books a 4.5/5 rating. Although some of them find it inconvenient to leave the app, download books, and then go back to listen to them, it’s still a top choice for others.
One of the users left a Google Play Books review stating this was a great and fairly cheap app. However, some people criticize it because it can’t play audiobooks in the background.
Google’s audiobook database could be the largest, but it’s not the only one. Of course, everyone wants to find the best audiobook app, but not all are as good as they seem. One of many similar services that have drawn our attention with its online presence and reputation is Audible.
In the following part of our review, you’ll read about our impressions about Audible compared to Google Play Books.
Google Play Books vs. Audible
The most apparent difference between these two audio sites is the content. While Audible has audiobooks and podcasts, Google Play Books has audiobooks, textbooks, and comics. Furthermore, their pricing systems are contradictory.
Then, both Google Play Books and Audible let you purchase individual titles at retail prices. However, Audible is a subscription-based company, so you can explore its features during a 30-day free trial period.
Regarding the availability, Google Play music audiobooks are present globally. So is Audible, but neither is available in every country in the world. Therefore, the titles vary depending on your location. Moreover, Audible shows prices in various currencies.
Pros and Cons
- Millions of books, comics, textbooks, and audiobooks
- Available for iOS and Android devices, in browsers, and as a Chrome extension
- No subscriptions required
- Abridged and auto-narrated audiobooks
- Synced with Google Drive
- The family library
- Buying and renting books available on desktop and Android devices only
Google Play Books Review — Final Verdict
In short, Google Play Books stores an immense number of titles for listening and reading. Moreover, its flexible pricing allows anyone to purchase books without commitments, either occasionally or regularly.
As a worldwide digital book provider, Google Play Books lets you print books as well. In fact, anything is possible with a Google account. After trying out Google Play Books ourselves, we feel its value lies in the personalized recommendations and individual book prices.