Pros / The titles on Audiobookstore.com are easy to share because they don’t have Digital Rights Management Protection.
Cons / The library only has 65,000 titles.
Verdict / While there is a certain allure to being able to share audio book files with family members, Audiobookstore.com’s discount-based membership program isn’t the best value out there.
Audiobookstore.com is a discount-based membership plan, much like AudiobooksNow.com. When you enroll, you pay $5.95 for your first audiobook. After that, the $5.95 monthly fee gives you access to discount prices. I tested a variety of audio book subscriptions for a month and found that the services that use a discount pricing model have a significantly higher average cost per title than those with credit-based memberships.
While Audiobookstore.com advertises that 90 percent of its books cost less than $12.95, when I looked for new and popular titles from 2016 on the site, I found the average price was about $17.10. When you add in the monthly fee, and if you only buy one book each month, the average shoots up to around $22.50, which is one of the higher prices per audio book I saw. Keep mind that I looked specifically at the prices of new and popular releases to find the average price, so my data doesn’t mean there aren’t bargains on the site. If you have the time to search for them and aren’t very selective about what you listen to next, you can likely find some good deals.
In addition to its higher prices, Audiobookstore.com has the smallest library of the services we reviewed – it only has 65,000 titles on its site. Even though that’s 10 times more than most people will read in a lifetime, Audible, the number one choice, has a library almost three times as large.
Because of its smaller size, I was surprised to learn that the store stocks a lot of new and popular bestsellers. When I looked for the titles on my list, I found that 72 percent of them were available on the site, which is about the same or better than some of our top picks.
Another upside to the site’s small catalog is that all its titles are Digital Rights Management Free. Digital Rights Management, or DRM, prevents users from sharing audio book files, but if you download a book from Audiobookstore.com, you can listen to it on any device you’d like.
You can listen to your library on the web, and the store offers recommendations for your next book. However, you can’t purchase new books from the app, which is a letdown if you finish listening to one on the go.
In the app, the Current Audio Book tab has some narration control options, such as a sleep timer and variable playback speed, and you can find them by clicking on the Settings button. These tools were easier to find in Audiobookstore.com’s app than those for a lot of other services I tested. However, the app isn’t as customizable as others, which may be a problem if you have specific audio book listening habits.
Audiobookstore.com has a FAQs page with a search bar, which is a useful feature when you’re trying to quickly find answers to your questions. The FAQs page was very similar to those on many of the other sites I reviewed, but it would be better if it had more substantial information, especially since the site doesn’t offer phone or live chat support. The service’s email support was reliable, but it’d be nice to get instant help.
- Number of Titles
- Membership Fee
- Popular Titles
- Average Price Per Book
For me, a discount-based membership isn’t the best option because it takes me more time to decide on my next book if I’m comparing prices on the titles that I want. Audiobook memberships like AudiobooksNow.com or Audiobookstore.com, on average, cost more per month than credit-based systems. That said, Audiobookstore.com’s downloads are DRM-free, so if you plan on playing books on many different devices, its library might be a good choice.