All-you-can-read ebook service Scribd now has an all-you-can-listen component with the addition of 30,000 audiobooks included as part of its $8.99 per month subscription. Android devices and Web browsers will get first access to the new category, followed by iOS in a few days.
Members won’t have to pay any extra to listen to audiobooks, as it’s bundled into the existing pricing. Scribd CEO Trip Adler said audiobooks have been the number one requested feature by current users.
Audio content is streamed from Scribd, so you’ll be able to start listening to a book right away. You can also save titles for offline support.
The audiobook selection, which comes via a partnership with Findaway World, includes work from contemporary authors, young adult books, celebrity readings of classic books, and childrens’ books. Meanwhile, the ebook side of the service now includes 500,000 titles.
Scribd could attract a new audience with its audiobook offering. The ebook industry has tended to skew toward female readers, but audiobooks have an even split between men and women. Users could also get substantially more value out of the service since audio content works well for multi-tasking activities like daily commutes or trips to the gym.
To accommodate the new product category, Scribd has redesigned its interface to include a tab for audiobooks. Just like with ebooks, you’ll have access to editorial recommendations and lists of popular titles on the service.
The audio player lets you skip chapters, jump forward or back 30 seconds and add to library. You can also bookmark locations and set a sleep timer. Some books also support playback at faster speeds.
Scribd already competes with Amazon in the subscription book space, and it will now go up against Amazon-owned Audible for audiobooks. Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited subscription does include some audiobooks, and Audible also offers a $14.95 membership plan with one ebook credit per month and discounts on additional titles.