Apple Might Be Developing an Audiobooks Service

Apple in 2022 could expand its services portfolio to add an audiobooks service, according to a report from The Economist (via 9to5Mac) that outlines Apple's efforts to break into media and compete with Netflix, Amazon, and other companies.

General Books Feature
The Economist goes over all of Apple's existing services like Apple TV+, Apple Music, Apple News+, Apple Arcade and Apple Fitness before throwing in a one line mention of a possible audiobooks offering.

In the past couple of years Apple has made smaller media bets including Arcade, a subscription gaming package, News+, a publishing bundle, and Fitness+, which offers video aerobics classes. There is talk of an audiobooks service later this year.

There are no details beyond the quick mention of an audiobooks option, so it's not clear where The Economist's information is coming from nor what an audiobooks product from Apple might look like, but with Apple already competing in podcasts and books, audiobooks could be the next logical step.

Apple already sells audiobooks through its Apple Books app, but books are only sold on a one-off basis with no option for unlimited listening. Apple could perhaps develop a service similar to Amazon's Audible, which offers credits for audiobooks for a monthly fee along with a selection of "Audible Plus" titles that do not require credits.

Pricing on Audible Plus starts at $7.95 for a limited selection of audiobooks that does not include new releases, while Audible Premium Plus is priced at $14.95 for Plus access and a credit for a new book each month. Offering an audiobooks service that includes unlimited access to new audiobooks is probably unlikely given the cost and royalties involved with audiobooks, so Apple would likely need to use Amazon's format or something close to it.

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Top Rated Comments

coachgq Avatar
32 months ago
I hope they throw it in on Apple one premium.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Think|Different Avatar
32 months ago
Oh, my favorite site — MightRumors.com
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
McScooby Avatar
32 months ago
Let’s just hope the folk that designed AppleNews+ don’t have a say in the design, you’d never find anything, it’s woeful.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Zwhaler Avatar
32 months ago
Little late? I hope they do it to encourage competition. But books, audiobooks, podcasts, and voice assistants were all missed opportunities for the 2010's. Apple could have been a dominant player in each of these. Instead we have Amazon, Amazon, Google/Spotify and Google/Amazon/ sort of Apple, respectively.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
xnu Avatar
32 months ago
I kinda like Audible, not sure how you improve audio books. Maybe make them thinner, brighter and more energy efficient? Of course not compatible with anything as well.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dannyyankou Avatar
32 months ago
It's a no brainer, I'm surprised they didn't do this years ago.

And do it for text books too.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)