Audio Books : The Chosen One - Scribd

It has been almost 3 months of a LOT of audio books. Honestly this is quite new for me, I've been reading physical books actively since I was 9. Although I listened to podcasts and online talks all the time, I never thought listening to audiobooks would be this accessible nowadays. Several years ago when I first started searching, it was still hard (because of the licensing and expensive prices). 

I also been having mixed feelings about whether I should convert to digital books or stay with physical books (for almost 4 years now) - but this year, I've decided to convert to digital. Except for comics and graphic books, because I really love to re-read and go through those picture books over and over again. 
So the search for audio book platform started early in January, I've tried a lot of websites and apps that could offer free trials (because we need to know the pro & cons before subscribing to something - personal preferences is important). Other than online reviews, I did try their free trials happily (and so I listened to a lot of free books before deciding on one).  ♥


Here are the lists of audio books platform that I've tried :

- Free - you can use it anytime
- Old books, mostly before 1932
Desktop + app
- I've listened to :
  • Anthem by Ayn Rand
  • Porcelain & Pink by F.S.Fitzgerald
  • The Book of Tea by Kakuzo Okakura
  • The Light Princess by George Mac Donald
  • Mathilda by Mary w. Shelley

- One free trial = 1 credit
- An Amazon company
- You'll buy the audio book (so you can listen to it over and over again, if you want)
- Great selection of latest books
- $14.95/month = 1 credit
Desktop + app
- I've listened to :
  • The Sense of Ending by Julian Barnes

Perpustakaan Negara (Overdrive)
- Free
- Very limited selection
- You can borrow books, but you need to wait for your turn
- You will get a week to finish it up
Desktop + app (Libby)
- I've listened to :
  • The Ghost by Robert Harris
  • The Noticer by Andy Andrews
  • What Language is That by Uwem Akpan

- One free trial = 1 credit
- $14.95 per month
- You'll buy the audio book
- Desktop + app
- I've listened to :
  • Call Me by Your Name by Andre Aciman
Note : I forgot to manually cancel the subscription after the trial, by the end of the month, money has been deducted from my Paypal account and I received another 1 credit =.= So now I've cancelled the subscription and I'm currently listening to : The Year of Less by Cait Flanders using the credit.


Otto Radio (app)
- One Free trial
- Selection of podcasts & audio books
- I've listened to :
  • Mr. Penumbra's 24-hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

Scribd ★★★★
- One month free trial
- Latest selection
- 1.4M ebooks + 100k audio book selection
- Online/offline feature
- $8.99/month, unlimited rents
- I've listened to :
  • Call Me by Your Name by Andre Aciman  
  • After You by Jojo Moyes
  • The Midnight Palace by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
  • The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto by Mitch Albom
  • Sounds Like Me by Sara Bareilles
  • Rework by Jason Fried
  • Yes, My Accent is Real by Kunal Nayyar
  • An Unquiet Mind by Kay Redfield Jamison
  • $100 Startups by Chris Guillebeau
  • Scrappy Little Nobody by Anna Kendrick

Feelings and thoughts :
So I used more than 5 companies/apps - the free ones and the paid version ones. I've decided to choose Scribd. Here are my reasons :
  • One month free trial = 10 audio books
  • Renting instead of buying - honestly, I just need to listen to the book only one time. If I really like it, I will probably buy a physical one so that I can hold it and put it next to my bed and pretend I have the time to read it.
  • Subscription = $8.99 = RM 35 per month for unlimited access to e-books and audio books. I don't really need to own books (in this age) when I can still enjoy it by borrowing it from the library (think about the dying polar bear). Plus, RM 35 is the price of one book in Malaysia when I can read unlimited amount of books in Scribd.
  • Latest collection - they currently have more than 1.4M e-books and 100k audio books. I can't complain to that. 
There are cons for free apps available in the market, for example : Librivox only offers old books and Overdrive offers what Perpustakaan Negara have in their library (very-very limited collection - I've listened to all that I wanted to try). Not to say that I'm not recommending these apps - if you just want to try to listen to free audiobooks, you can definitely try those. 

Plus all the paid apps/websites that offers free trials. Audible and are very expensive (around $14.99 for 1 credit = 1 book), but you'll buy the books and will have your own library to store your digital books. But I don't think you would want to buy expensive e-books/audiobooks when they are just digital files.

So that's why Scribd is the best option there is, at least for now

Note : There are still a lot of other options around, I'm sure. But I've tried several for now and I think I'm okay with paying $8.99 per month to Scribd to borrow from their book collection plus, I'm thanking them for their free one-month trial when I listened to those 10 books for free. I am so happy so I've been recommending the app on my social media and now in my blog (See, if you make one user happy, you'll probably get so many more new users by all the great recommendations and reviews by that happy customer) :D 

2 comments on "Audio Books : The Chosen One - Scribd"
  1. Thanks for sharing this! I just downloaded Scribd. Exciting!!