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Kindle Unlimited: 5 Things to Know Before You Subscribe

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Is Kindle Unlimited a good deal? This is what you need to know about the Kindle subscription service that lets you read over 1 million books, popular magazines, and listen to thousands of audiobooks for $9.99 a month.

This is an optional subscription service that is in addition to the Prime Lending Library that Amazon includes free with Amazon Prime. Although Amazon calls this the Kindle Unlimited program, you don’t need a Kindle to use it. You can use any Kindle device as well as an iPhone, iPad, or Android device with the Kindle app.

You can try Kindle Unlimited for 30 days free. After the trial, this converts to a $9.99 a month subscription. You can cancel before this trial ends if you don’t like the service.

What is Kindle Unlimited?

What is Kindle Unlimited?

Kindle Unlimited is a book subscription service for eBooks, audiobooks, and popular magazines. While you may be able to get some of these ebooks and audiobooks from your local library, that often involves waiting for books to become available. With Kindle Unlimited, you can download new books immediately. This is not a full subscription to Audible, but you do get audiobooks as part of this. The magazine component includes popular magazines, with the latest issues. If you are interested in audiobooks, you are better off signing up for an Audible plan and getting free books as a signup bonus.

There are no limits on how long you can keep a Kindle Unlimited book, as long as you are still a subscriber. You can borrow new books or audiobooks at any time, but you can only keep 10 books out at a given time.

How Much is Kindle Unlimited?

Kindle Unlimited is $9.99 a month. There are no extra charges or multi-level plans. You can get a free 30-day trial if you have not used Kindle Unlimited before. You can also purchase 6, 12, and 24-month subscriptions to send as a gift or to use for yourself. You need to sign up for Kindle Unlimited on the web, so you cannot sign up in the app on iPhone, iPad, or Android.

You cannot share Kindle Unlimited with other members of your family through the option to share Amazon Prime, but you could easily share this with a significant other or a child you trust. To do this, you need to share your Amazon login information with that person. From there you would be sharing the 10 book limit and any books you both read would sync to the progress of the farthest reader.

How does Kindle Unlimited Work?

How does Kindle Unlimited work?

Once you sign up for a plan, you can download Kindle Unlimited books directly to your Kindle or your mobile device easily. You can also browse online, which is where you can easily see what is in the Kindle Unlimited library. Not every book on Amazon is included since publishers need to put books into the program.

On Amazon, you can click the three lines in the upper left, click on Kindle E-readers & Books, and then on Kindle Unlimited. This shows you the books that are included.

If you click this link, you can look through the Kindle Unlimited library and then add items to your Kindle or Kindle app from the web.

From the Browse Kindle Unlimited books page, you can check the box on the left, eBooks with Audible Narration, which will show you all the books that include an audiobook version as well. This link takes you directly to those books.

When you are done with a book, you need to return it in order to free up another slot to check a book out. The books are listed on your accounts page, which is kind of a pain to find if you don’t know where to look. Click on Account & Lists and then on Your Kindle Unlimited. From there you can find the book you are finished with and click return.

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  • Adjustable front light lets you read comfortably for hours—indoors and outdoors, day and night.
  • Purpose-built for reading, with a 167 ppi glare-free display that reads like real paper, even in direct sunlight.
  • Read distraction-free. Highlight passages, look up definitions, translate words, and adjust text size—without ever leaving the page.
  • Select from millions of books, newspapers, and audiobooks. Kindle holds thousands of titles so you can take your library with you.
  • With Prime Reading, Prime members read free with unlimited access to over a thousand titles.

Kindle Unlimited vs Prime Reading

Amazon offers two lending library-style programs for the Kindle and Kindle apps. Kindle Unlimited is a paid service with a wider selection, audiobooks, and magazines. Prime Reading is a smaller library that only includes books, though you can check out a book and then buy the Audible narration at a cheaper price than if you bought the book on Audible without first checking it out on Prime Reading. Prime Reading is free for Amazon Prime members.

The biggest difference is that the Prime Reading library includes over 1,000 books, while the Kindle Unlimited Library includes over a million books.

Is Kindle Unlimited Worth It?

Is Kindle Unlimited worth it?

If you read several books a month, then the cost of Kindle Unlimited will pay for itself pretty quickly each month, and through the year. But, this depends on what kind of books you are reading.

The Kindle Unlimited library includes some well-known authors and books, but it is primarily populated with self-published or indie authors. There is nothing wrong with these books, but if you prefer to read mainstream new releases, you may end up disappointed with the selection.

The best thing to do is to test out the free Kindle Unlimited 30-day trial and you will be able to see if the books you want are in the library. You can also check to see how many books you read, and decide if it is worth $9.99 a month.

Last update on 2020-06-02. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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