What is Kindle Unlimited?Kindle Unlimited is an ebook subscription service presented by Amazon. This isn't a new idea. There are several other subscription services that have been available for a while now, and have quite a bit of funding behind them. This service is a bit different from the others. Let's take a look at some of the features of this service.
- Price: $9.99
- Selection: Over 600,000 books
- Audiobooks: Several of the books available through this service are also available in audiobook format through Audible
- Amount of books: Unlimited up to 10 at a time
- App: Available through any device that supports the Kindle app
- Free Trial: 30 day free trial
What makes this service different from the others available?Not a whole lot to be honest. You can read my previous post exploring the other subscription services that are available here: http://brianbasham.blogspot.com/2014/03/a-look-at-ebook-subscription-services.html. Here's a list of the biggest differences between Kindle Unlimited and these other services:
- The inclusion of audiobooks
- A direct path for self published authors to make their books available to this service through KDP
- The selection of books contains mostly self published works along with works from several smaller publishers
- The selection of books does not currently contain any books from the big 5 publishers
- The distribution of the Kindle app. It's available on just about every mobile device
- The backing of the Amazon targeted marketing machine
What does it mean for readers?A few of my friends signed up for this as soon as they got the email from Amazon, and instantly fell in love with it. They complained that some of the books on their "to read" list weren't available, but they moved on to pick up several other books that looked interesting to them. It didn't slow them down much. They didn't seem to know anything about the other subscription services that are available. Kudos to the power of Amazon's marketing. It also shows, in spite of the large amounts of funding, that the other subscription services haven't been successful in getting the word out.
Those who read tons of books are going to love this service. It won't matter that the selection doesn't include many A list titles from the biggest publishers. They will still purchase those books, but will likely miss out on many mid-list books they would have normally purchased otherwise. Instead they will most likely spend that time reading books published by smaller presses or via KDP that are available via Kindle Unlimited.
What does it mean for authors?It's not clear what this service might mean for authors. Some authors are running around proclaiming that the sky is falling, but it doesn't seem like that is the case. Some others are looking at it as potentially another revenue stream which it most certainly is, but the real mystery is "how much?". It still isn't clear what the royalty payout will be for authors in this deal.
How this service effects visibility for authors is another matter. This gives authors another incentive to publish through KDP. It won't be worth it for authors who have an established following outside of Amazon. Those authors can still publish their shorter works (the ones with smaller revenue stream) through KDP to take advantage of the visibility that this service may provide. It may help other first time self published authors gain visibility that they would not otherwise have. Their book may still be a needle in a haystack, but it's a much smaller haystack.
One last thingToday July 19, 2014 is the last day to sign up to be eligible for my $20 Amazon Giftcard giveaway. To enter you just need to sign up for my monthly newsletter.
Sign up for the newsletter here: http://brianbasham.blogspot.com/p/blog-page_29.html
More information here: http://brianbasham.blogspot.com/2014/06/giveaway-and-other-goodies.html
If you're interested in Kindle Unlimited here's the link: http://www.amazon.com/b?ie=UTF8&node=9578129011
I'm leaving to go on vacation to visit relatives in a few hours. I will try to be active on instagram and twitter, but I'm not sure how well the internet access will be where I am going. If I disappear for the next week it won't be because I have forgotten about you all!