Spotify is now selling audiobooks from inside its app. Users in the US can go to a dedicated section, purchase their chosen books, and listen along.
Launched today, there are over 300,000 titles to purchase. While browsing, the play button will look like a lock icon. Tapping on that opens a separate webpage where users can pay for their audiobook.
Once paid, the audiobook will be available from the user’s library and can be played anytime. Spotify also allows downloads for offline listening and has automatic bookmarking, so you never lose your place.
You can adjust the playback speed with various slower-than- and faster-than-normal options. And yes, there’s a rating system, so you can rave about how much you liked the title (or didn’t).
Spotify has been positioning itself as a one-stop-shop for all things audio for some time now. Last year, the company bought Findaway, a “leading audiobook platform.”
That purchase gave Spotify an audiobook publisher and distributor and one that distributes to other audiobook retailers.
Spotify now has another revenue stream, one that’s not dependent on subscribers
The deal also came with a self-publishing arm. Will Spotify enable self-published audiobooks to join its platform? Is it already using this for its podcasting features?
Spotify is betting big on audiobooks being an income driver in the future. Earlier this year, at Spotify’s Investor Day, CEO Daniel Ek said, “we believe that audiobooks, in their many different forms, will be a massive opportunity.”
That could well be true. The global book market is around $140 billion annually, with audiobooks still under 10% of that total. The potential is there to expand to 50% of the market.
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