For many of us, it can be a little more difficult finding the time to be able to relax while enjoying a good book.
For us to get as much enjoyment out of a story as possible, we need to dedicate a lot of attention and energy in order to understand exactly what a book is trying to convey and how we feel about it.
A fantastic workaround to this that has grown immensely popular in the last decade is audiobooks that allow you to listen to books, sometimes in an abridged or summarised form, without having to find the time to sit down and turn the pages ourselves.
You might not get that same sensation of being able to physically unravel the pages of the book and read at your own pace, however when you’re having a busy day but really want to get stuck into a book you’ve heard nothing but good things about, audiobooks are the way to go with Blinkist and Audible being some of the most popular today.
But which is more worth your money? Keep reading this Blinkist vs Audible review and we take a look at the major differences between the two and why to consider one over the other.
What Is Blinkist?
Blinkist is essentially a professional book summary app that is designed for those of us who struggle to finish our books and feel a little overwhelmed at the number of new books being thrown our way.
When Blinkist was founded in 2012, it proposed to solve this widespread issue and has now grown into a huge team of approximately 70 people who are dedicated to making each and every non-fiction book out there easy to understand and digest, without needing to spend hours going through a book when you’re struggling for time.
With the options of either using their free subscription which gives you access to the ‘daily pick’, or their paid premium plan which gives you access to over 5,500 book summarisations, it is incredibly admirable just how much Blinkist has grown over this last decade, and how efficiently it works in practice.
What Is Audible?
For many people, Audible has been the reigning king of audiobooks for quite some time now and while it certainly does have its shortcomings, there’s no getting around the fact that it is currently the most popular audiobook service out there currently with more than 5 million app downloads.
With a catalog of over 300,000 books for users to get stuck into, ranging from incredibly niche stories to modern-day classics, along with access to a specific selection of radio and tv shows, Audible has proved time and time again why it’s one of the best services in the industry in terms of audiobooks, with the catalog and team behind the app only growing.
What Are The Differences Between Audible And Blinkist?
Before you go spending your hard-earned money on one of these audiobook services, they actually differ massively not only in terms of catalog and price but even in regards to their specific focus and what services they offer each customer.
Here is a breakdown of all the major differences between Audible and Blinkist that are crucial to know about before subscribing to one service or the other.
The biggest difference between the two is how they actually present each book.
Audible provides full commentary of their books which can sometimes be from the author themselves, or in some cases will be from a passionate reader who has enjoyed the book before.
Audible has even gone further with this and presented select books as more of a pantomime with sound effects and atmospheric noises making the reading experience even more immersive and memorable.
These kind of performances will also feature some incredibly talented Hollywood actors who make the book feel more frantic and alive such as Audible’s fantastic abridged version of Moby Dick featuring the likes of David Morissey.
Blinkist works a little differently in comparison because it instead offers ‘Summaries’ to its users rather than the entire book being read from start to finish.
This is not to suggest that these summaries aren’t still more then enough on their own however, each summary carefully highlights the most significant and crucial parts of the book so that you can still get a full understanding of the narrative and relevant information while saving plenty of hours in the process.
Therefore, when choosing between both services, it really comes down to your ideal reading experience.
If you have a wide selection of books in your backlog and want to get through a few at a time, then Blinkist is the best option, however if you want the full experience of going through a book at your own pace and piecing the story together yourself, this can be a much more rewarding experience which is offered by Audible.
In terms of how many books you will actually be able to choose from as a premium member of these platforms, since it has been around for nearly twice as long, Audible innnevitably has the much bigger library with over 300,000 books which is a number that only grows larger as new books come out and with the service growing as much as it is.
In contrast, the much younger Blinkist currently only offers around 5,500 books, however when keeping in mind that many of these are summarised rather than being read from start to finish, it does mean that this is still a good selection of books to get information from in a much shorter time.
One crucial factor to always keep in mind is that Blinkist offers summaries primarily on non-fiction books.
This means that the fiction section of Blinkist is virtually non-existent, so if you enjoy reading books to jump into other worlds and enjoy rich stories that go on for a few hundred pages, Blinkist is not the way to go and is far better suited when you just want to absorb some quick information from some of the most popular non-fiction books out there currently.
This is much different from Audible which not only serves both fiction and non-fiction books, but also offers a wide variety of categories so that you can find exactly the type of book you’re looking for whether it be a murder mystery, or a classic from decades or even centuries ago.
In terms of overall selection, Audible therefore stands out on top not only for having both non-fiction and fictional books, but also for having a much wider selection in general due to how much longer it’s been around.
Ease Of Use
Both services are fairly easy to navigate and have clearly laid out menus that have a list of categories for users to choose from along with a search bar that will automatically detect the title you’re searching for while also bringing up similar books that you might be interested in.
For both services, you can also download titles so that they can be enjoyed when you’re offline, however, they will almost always download faster on Blinkist just because it only has to download the summary and not each and every page, which will also save you a significant amount of storage space.
One way Blinkit specifically makes its service as easy to use as possible is by offering its summaries in both the audio and written forms which are called ‘Blinks’.
You therefore get the option to either sit down and read through the key points from the book yourself, or you can opt for a more hands-free experience where you can sit back and relax or get on with your day while absorbing all the necessary information instead.
In comparison, you cannot read the books that Audible offers manually in the same way that you can with a Kindle for example, it is purely an audiobook platform so you will only be able to hear the books being read.
With that being said however, in terms of actually finding out about new books and dipping into other genres that you may not have thought about before, Audible is far better in this department for two main reasons.
For one, once you have selected two to three books to go into your library, Audible will automatically start recommending similar books on its front page that seem to line up with your reading preferences.
There is also the fact that Audible sorts each of its wide variety of books into very neat and concise categories, making it much easier to discover new genres with the service encouraging you to read more rather than leaving you to find new books on your own.
There is also a category section on Blinkist, however it’s a lot more vague and with fewer books it does mean you won’t always be getting the very best books in that genre.
Both Audible and Blinkit generously offer a free trial before you commit to paying for one of their premium plans, however the actual time you get to try each out differs slightly as while Audible offers 30 days free including one title free of charge, Blinkist only offers 7 days, however you will get access to every book on the platform during this period.
You can then upgrade to a premium plan for both services to access a few more features and to gain wider access to the catalog, however the prices do differ slightly.
After the 30 day trial is up, you can choose between either the $7.99 a month Audible Plus plan or the Audible Premium Plus option which is $15.99 a month.
While Audible Plus gives you access to thousands of Audible originals along with podcasts, sleep tracks and meditation programmes, the slightly pricier Premium Plus plan grants you access to the services wide range of audiobooks, however you will only get one credit a month which you can use to download and keep any audiobook of your choice, even if you cancel the subscription.
In contrast, Blinkist only has two subscription plans being a yearly or monthly premium plan. While the yearly plan will cost $9.99 a month, if you choose the monthly plan it will be double the price at $19.99.
With either of these plans, you get unlimited access to the entire Binklist catalog right off the bat at no extra cost.
There are also a few additional features you get with the Blinkist premium plan which really enhance the service overall, specifically the highlight feature where you can point out specific passages or ideas from a book that you want to remember and then sync them with Evernote.
Unlike Audible where you must use a credit to officially own a book and listen to it offline, with Blinkit’s premium plan you can listen to any of its summaries offline after a simple download.
While the price of Audible is therefore quite fair considering how expensive audibooks usually are, for only one free title a month that you can actually own it can lag behind Blinkist in this area since that app grants its customers access to the entire library along with unlimited offline downloads, providing more features for a similar price.
Should I Buy Audible Or Blinkist?
The major factor which should sway you to subscribing to one service or the other is what kind of reading experience you’re looking for, and specifically what you’re trying to get out of listening to an audiobook.
If you want the full experience of reading a book over time with it feeling like a real journey with all the authors details and dialogue included, then Audible is definitely the way to go, especially if you want to get into reading as a hobby or if you’re returning to it.
Blinkist is for those people who simply don’t have the time or patience to sit down and go through a book and instead want to absorb the key information as quickly as possible.
In this sense, Blinkist does technically make it ‘easier’ to read your favorite books, however you won’t be getting the full experience and satisfaction of actually reading the book yourself.
There is also the catalog which is far more limited with Blinkist which has virtually no fictional books to offer, so if you are looking to jump into some fictional stories, Audible is definitely the way to go, while Blinkist is more optimal for people who want a dose of information all in one.
If you are still torn between the two, a final factor to consider is the price.
While both services are fairly comparable in terms of price, the major difference is that you will get immediate access to the entire library with Blinkist while also being able to download each and every book, making it far more optimal for travelling.
Audible on the other hand is a lot more restrictive with its audiobook access, only giving customers one credit a month to download and keep a title which can make it a little more annoying if you’re a fast reader and intend on going through multiple books in a short period.
Therefore, if you intend to really get back into reading and take your time listening to a book the whole way through with an incredibly extensive cataloge to choose from, Audible will be the much better option, however if you just want an effective way to quickly catch up on any non-fiction books that you may have missed out on, Blinkist provides a much more optimal experience.
Frequently asked questions
Does Audible Come Free With Amazon Prime?
Despite the many rumors that have been circulating ever since Amazon Prime has been around, Audible is only loosely connected to Amazon Prime and you will only get a few additional features if you have a Prime membership.
This unfortunately means that if you do have a Prime membership, you will not automatically be eligible for an Audible Premium membership as both are completely separate.
If you do sign up for Audible while having an Amazon Prime membership however, you will receive 2 free credits rather than one which is always a good bonus considering how hesitant Audible often is to give out credits to its users.
How Many Devices Can Use Audible Or Blinkist At Once?
With Blinkist, you will be able to use the subscribed account on as many devices as you like with the library and highlights of any passages syncing between each one.
For Audible, this works exactly the same with there being no limit to the number of computers or devices that can be linked to the account.
With each day feeling much busier than the last, it’s never a bad idea to invest in an audiobook service with Audible and Blinkist being some of the best, just always be sure what books you actually want to read and how you want to read them since both differ quite a bit in this department.