Google Play Books

In my opinion, the best electronic book reader that you'll ever have is the one that you have with you all the time. And what else that you have in your pocket 12 hours a day but your smartphone? Sure you can always get a dedicated ebook reader like a Amazon's Kindle or even a generic Android tablet, but for me they're just too large and bulky. I still find reading a book with a tablet in hand in public as a bit show-offish and I'm more comfortable reading from a smartphone. At least I'd look like a normal guy who's probably sending text messages or reading his Twitter feed. Now there's about a dozen ebook reader in the market for your smartphone. I've used several free ones such as Fabrik and Aldiko, both are great in their own ways to be honest. But ultimately, I've settled on Google Play Books as my favorite ebook reader app. I'll tell you why in a minute.

For starters, Google Play Books is from Google and it's free. The electronic books that you have on Google Play Books syncs with your Google Play account as it is from Google and you can access it with any browser on a computer and any Android or iOS devices. Those two features alone should make Google Play Books the top choice for an ebook reader app.

As with many ebook reader app, they work best with an epub file format. Epub is an open source electronic document format which is supported by most ebook reader app and devices, except Kindle (Amazon you suck, that's why I'll probably never buy a Kindle). Sure you can always upload or sync a PDF document directly with your ebook reader app but you'll find out soon enough that it's a horrible experience. Even when reading a PDF document with a large tablet, you'll have to constantly zoom in and out and scroll left right, up and down to read the text. Epub on the other hand, fits nicely on your ebook reader app even for books with graphics.

However since not all ebook comes in the ePub format, you'll have to convert them into ePub for the best reading experience. Programs like Calibre eBook management is a great and free software that'll convert PDFs and many other document formats to ePub and vice versa. Here's an excellent article at How-to-geek on how to convert a PDF or any other ebook document to ePub using Calibre eBook Management.

If you already have some ePub files, you can already upload them to Google Play Books or purchase some from the Play Store. To upload ePub (or any other ebook documents) to Google Play Books, you'll need to do them from this page. Once the upload is complete, your eBooks will be synced to all your iOS or Android devices that have Google Play Books installed. The first time you open the book, it'll download all the chapters so that you can read them offline anytime. Another great feature of this app is that it'll automatically bookmark the current page of the book you're reading and sync it in the cloud across all your devices. So next time you open the book on an Android, iOS or the website, you'll find the last page you've read. Apart from that you can always bookmark any page you want manually, create notes, find word definitions and use several other cool features with the Google Play Books app.

I'm the kind of guy that couldn't bear to waste a second of my free or spare time sitting idle, doing nothing productive. Therefore a great ebook reader app such as Google Play Books is perfect for people like me. After I'm done reading all my social network feeds (Twitter/Instagram/Facebook) or when I don't feel like reading my RSS feeds with Feedly, I'll open up my Google Play Books app and start reading one of the many books I've got there.

Download links:

Calibre eBook management

Google Play Books for iOS and Android

Google Play Books upload page

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