A new free update to the Amazon Kindle app for both iOS and Google’s Android now allows users to switch seamlessly between reading a book and listening to it, so long as the user has both the Kindle and Audible version of the book.
Kindle books must be bought through Amazon directly, with no option to utilize in-app purchasing. However, once a book has been purchased through Amazon’s store, it can be upgraded to include an audio version of it for as low as 99 cents. The audio version comes from Audible, audiobook company owned by Amazon.
The new Kindle app update allows for users to have an the audiobook pick up where they left off reading. The audiobook is seamlessly able to do this through Amazon’s “Whispersync for Voice.”
“We’re working hard to help customers find more moments each day to enjoy a great book,” said Russ Grandinetti, Senior Vice President, Amazon Kindle. “Integrating professional narration into our Kindle apps means you never have to put down a favorite book—start reading at home, get in the car and simply tap a button to continue listening without losing your place.”
This update could be perfect for readers who have long commutes to work or simply want to rest their eyes. Amazon has professional narration available for over 45,000 Kindle books. There is also the Matchmaker service, which looks at a user’s Kindle library to see which books can be synced with audiobook versions.
“We continue to hear from a growing number of Whispersync for Voice converts who tell us the innovation has profoundly changed the way they read—in fact, switching back and forth between reading and listening has become their preferred way of experiencing stories,” said Audible founder and CEO Donald Katz. “And the feature has gotten easier and easier to use, as this exciting integration into Kindle apps attests.”