Google just started selling audiobooks in Google Play, which means you can listen to them with Google Home. Here's how.
Taylor MartinCNET Contributor
Taylor Martin has covered technology online for over six years. He has reviewed smartphones for Pocketnow and Android Authority and loves building stuff on his YouTube channel, MOD. He has a dangerous obsession with coffee and is afraid of free time.
has worked to quickly close the gap between
and Alexa, there was one major multimedia box that Google hadn't ticked yet: audiobooks. Until Tuesday, that is.
Alongside, movies, TV, magazine subscriptions, books, Android apps and music, Google just added audiobooks to
. You'll find these audiobooks under the Books section, and they're available now in 45 countries and nine languages.
subscription approach to audiobooks with Audible, Google is simply selling audiobooks outright -- they must be purchased, but they'll be added to your account and can be shared with family members who you add to your Family Library. For the launch, Google has also slashed the price of many titles and (for a limited time) is offering a 50-percent-off coupon for your first audiobook purchase.
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But the importance of audiobooks in Google Play is that you no longer have to cast or stream audiobooks over
to listen to them on your Google Home speaker. Audiobooks from Google Play are available on Android and iOS devices (through the Google Play Books app), the web and most devices that support Google Assistant. (Audiobooks work in Google Assistant on Android
, but not on iOS devices for now, and support for
This means you can listen to audiobooks on all your devices and seamlessly switch between them. You can go from listening to a book at home through
on the living room TV, pick up from your phone or car on your commute to work and listen to it on your bedroom Google Home speaker without ever losing your place or skipping a beat.
To start listening to an audiobook on Google Home, you must first purchase a title. You'll have to do this at play.google.com or within the Google Play Books app. Also, make sure you purchase it from the correct account.
Go back: "OK, Google, go back 10 minutes/seconds."
Unfortunately, through Google Home and voice commands, it's not possible to change the playback speed. However, you can use the Google Play Books app from iOS or an Android device to cast the book to your Google Home speaker and choose from 0.5x to 2x playback speed, as well as select a specific chapter to play.