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Audible Plus Offers Unlimited Access to Exclusive Content for $8 Per Month

Amazon subsidiary Audible just announced that it is launching its third unlimited subscription audiobook service.

The service is called Audible Plus, and will cost $7.95 per month. It will let you access "over 68,000 hours of content and 11,000+ titles from across the content spectrum", Audible announced, "including documentaries, comedy, journalism, kids, wellness, self-development, selections from Audible Theater and more. New Audible Originals come from a wide range of talent including CommonSt. VincentBlake GriffinJesse EisenbergTom MorelloKevin BaconDavid KoeppJamie Lee CurtisKate MaraTayari Jones and Harvey Fierstein, among many other celebrated creators and performers. The content slate will continue to grow alongside various technical enhancements over the coming months."

This is the content that was formerly known as Audible Original.

It’s unclear how much of the catalog is exclusive content versus third-party, and it’s also not clear how creators' are getting paid (I am waiting for Audible to return my emails).

Current  Audible subscribers will find the Audible Plus catalog included in their existing subscriptions.  Speaking of which, Audible has renamed its Audible Gold plan and appears to be retiring the Audible Platinum plan.

Audible Gold is now called Audible Premium Plus on Amazon’s website. It costs $15 per month. and is the only option offered. All mentions of the more expensive Audible Platinum plan have been scrubbed, however it would does look like Amazon will let you keep the Platinum plan (for now). The Verge reports that Platinum subscribers will continue to receive two at the $22.95 per month price.

Update: A commenter says she can still see the $23 a month plan. I still can’t, which is interesting.

Audible Plus begins its initial rollout this week to existing Audible members. New customers interested in signing up to preview the Audible Plus standalone plan can do so beginning on Thursday.

P.S. Audible’s other audiobook subscription services include Audible Unlimited, which launched in Japan in 2015, and Audible Escape, which launched under the name Audible Romance back in 2017.

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Emily August 24, 2020 um 8:44 pm

When shopping plans from the audible page, all the previous plans are still available just with new naming conventions:

Audible Premium Plus $14.95/month
Audible Premium Plus—2 Credits $22.95/month
Audible Premium Plus Annual—12 Credits $119.50 for your first year, $149.50 a year thereafter
Audible Premium Plus Annual—24 Credits for $229.50 a year.

Nate Hoffelder August 24, 2020 um 8:50 pm

Really? That’s not what I saw on Amazon or Audible. (And I just checked, and still don’t see that.)

Got a link?

Faith Hudnell August 26, 2020 um 9:08 am

Here is a link to the new members plans. I don’t know if it will work for you since it is linked to my account. I got to it by looking at the FAQ on the Audible Plus page.

Nate Hoffelder August 26, 2020 um 9:14 am

I am still just seeing the one offer (the $14.95 plan). Thanks!

Even if I browse from a completely different computer, I still only see the one plan. I guess this means that the more expensive plan has been retired?

Faith August 26, 2020 um 9:46 am

I don’t think they are retired. The Gold and Premium plans (where you pay for either 12 or 24 credits upfront) have just been renamed as Premium Plus Annual. Under those plans you automatically get access to the new free catalog. They never really advertised those plans. Probably because credits are a lot cheaper that way.

Tom S August 25, 2020 um 2:08 am

This appears to be just rebranding, and an attempt to make money on Audible Original content and ‘podcasts’ as a separate subscription. As a former subscriber, I cannot seem to get to a page where I can actually choose a plan, they just show the $14.95/mo plan. Maybe they offer these later on in the signup process.

I think few people will actually sign up for $7.95, as you don’t really get full length audiobooks for that. I think the longest Original in my collection is around 6 hrs, and while there may be hundreds at this point, its still snacking, not a meal. I’m not at a point where I’m willing to pay for podcasts or regard them as worthy ‘bonus’ content (though I do support a number of podcasts via Patreon).

I’m not very happy with the latest changes to the Audible app. They’ve added collections, long overdue, but unfortunately they are all but unusable. You cannot select an item in your Library and add it to one or more of your collections. Instead you have to create or open a collection, and then scan through your entire library (or search) to add items to that collection. Then repeat with each collection. And of course these collections are different than ones created on Kindle platform, even though collections can have audiobooks in them on Kindle and Fire devices. It’s just not well implemented.

I’d prefer Amazon allow the Kindle app to play standalone audiobooks (as Apple Books, Play Books, Kobo, Nook, and library apps do) so there’s only one app needed, and any organizing can apply to both (and be shared with Kindle and Fire).

Disgusting Dude August 25, 2020 um 10:07 am

Audible is actually an independent operation from the Kindle group and while they coordinate they stay separate. The same applies to the music, Video, and gaming groups.
Which is a good thing because KDP is a lot more author and customer friendly than Audible.

People keep forgetting Amazon is a conglomerate of independent operations, each acting to its own agenda with each’s profits separate.

In that world, Audible is more interested in capturing audio sales, not enhancing Kindle value. So far, keeping the two groups at arm’s length has maximized each side’s reach as they don’t sacrifice optimization in the name of synergy. Mostly because they serve distinct markets with limited overlap and there is no indication Audible can be as successful under Kindle practices.

Tom S August 26, 2020 um 9:39 pm

Actually Audible customer support is excellent. And yes, the different groups have independent agendas. But some of the groups are pretty static, for example Goodreads is just keeping the lights on. There haven’t been any significant updates to the apps or web site in years. Same with Comixology, apart from Comixology Unlimited launch.

Still, I don’t see what would prevent the Kindle team from adding ‘full access to audible library’ to the Kindle apps. They already do this for Kindles with Audible support. I just want that extended to the rest of the Kindle platform.

Imagine if the Kindle app for Android let people sign up with Audible and consume audiobook content directly (instead of restricting this to ‘audiobook companions’ of audible content. Not only would that be another source of new Audible customers, but after you purchase an audiobook, Amazon could offer the ebook as an ‘upgrade’ (currently the Audible app does not identify which titles you own the ebook version of, which is annoying). On iOS, of course the only benefit would be a better user experience (at least unless Apple changes its in-app purchase policy).

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