Google Play Audiobooks Updated To Better Compete With Audible

If you have never listened to an audiobook, you are missing out on one of the better types of entertainment for long trips or people who drive a lot. The biggest name in audiobooks right now is Audible and it has been for a long time. However, Google wants people to think first of Google Play when they want a new audiobook and to facilitate that Google Play Audiobooks has some new updates to help better compete.

audiobook thumb

These new features are things that some might think Google should have added to its audiobooks service at launch and include things such as smart resume and bookmarks. Google Play audiobooks launched in January and allows fans to get audiobooks directly via the Google Play Books app on Android, iOS, and the internet. The bookmarks tool is one that will allow audiobook listeners to bookmark important parts of the book or quotes they want fast access to later. Listeners simply press the bookmark button and it's saved.

The smart resume feature is probably the feature that users of the service will appreciate most. This feature backs up the playback of your book to the beginning of the previous word or sentence. The idea is to help you remember what is going on if you must suddenly stop listening to a book and come back to it far enough down the road that you might not remember where you were.

Google Play has also added a new faster reading speed that allows you to speed books up by up to three times. When the service launched, double speed was as fast as users could go. If you want to slow things down, there is also an option for 0.5 times lower speed. An update to Google Assistant routines has also been added that will allow you to add audiobooks to your daily routine.

This means if you have an hour commute to work when you get in your car and Google Maps has been actioned by your "Hey Google, tell me about my day" command your audiobook will start playing. Google has also opened the Family Library allowing you to share content with up to five other people to 13 more markets including Belgium, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, Chile, Mexico, Japan (audiobooks only), and South Africa. These new features started rolling out yesterday on Android, iOS, and Google Assistant.