WHAT ARE AU­DIO­BOOKS?

Gadgets and Gizmos (India) - - AUDIO BOOKS -

Au­dio­books, as the name sug­gests, are au­dio ver­sions of a book. They can ei­ther be full read­ing of the text or a con­cise form of the book in au­dio for­mat. In fact, the first au­dio books were made for the vis­ually im­paired in the 1930s. There are au­dio books which are recorded with dif­fer­ent voices for all the characters or as a sim­ple, maybe an­i­mated, read­ing of the same by ei­ther the au­thor or some­one else. The lat­ter tends to be a bit bor­ing, es­pe­cially in the case of fic­tion. Au­dio­books are avail­able in ei­ther phys­i­cal for­mat — mostly as a CD, or au­dio cas­settes — or in dig­i­tal for­mat where you can down­load it as an MP3 file. Yes, au­dio books do tend to be a bit more ex­pen­sive than the pa­per ver­sions.

Most on­line book stores in In­dia have a de­cent col­lec­tion of au­dio books, though the same can­not be said about ac­tual book stores. Since they are still not so pop­u­lar in In­dia, most stores don’t stock up on a va­ri­ety of ti­tles. Even on­line book stores deal mostly in CDs and don’t of­fer the op­tion of dig­i­tal down­loads. A lot of clas­sics and re­search books are avail­able for free down­load and us­age on open source web­sites like lib­rivox.org, freeclas­si­cau­dio­books.com and booksshould­be­free.com. A ma­jor­ity of the ti­tles on th­ese web­sites are books which are no longer bound by copy­right laws. Reado.com Though Reado is still adding more ti­tles, this is the only web­site in In­dia that lets you down­load a dig­i­tal for­mat now. How­ever, the down­load op­tion is not avail­able for all ti­tles, while some don’t have the CD op­tion. For ti­tles with both op­tions avail­able, the dig­i­tal down­load seems to be a bit cheaper. Flip­kart.com Be­ing In­dia’s most pop­u­lar on­line book store, Flip­kart has a long list of au­dio books on sale. We spot­ted over 7,000 ti­tles on the site. How­ever, you do not have the op­tion of down­load­ing mp3 for­mat files of the same, not even through Flyte. Au­dio­bookin­dia.com This web­site sells just au­dio­books and there are hun­dreds of ti­tles to choose from. But again, there are no dig­i­tal down­loads avail­able at the moment. Un­like Flip­kart, here you can search the ti­tles by gen­res. Plus, they do seem to have the best col­lec­tion of chil­dren’s ti­tles. Au­di­ble.com This Ama­zon web­site lets you buy au­dio books, as well as down­load the files to smart­phones through a app. Down­loaded files can also be played on mp3 play­ers. Plus there is full in­te­gra­tion with Kin­dle so that you can read one page and then hear the next page over an­other de­vice or the Kin­dle

e-reader.

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