Apple Books Review (For Self-Published Authors)

Christopher Ortiz
February 15, 2023 | 5 mins

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Certain companies become successful enough that people start referring to them as brands. Certain brands become successful enough that people develop a loyalty towards them. Their name becomes household and their product releases are anticipated in the same way the newest iteration of a movie franchise is. Often these companies become so successful that they are able to branch out from their original concept into other areas as the credence they possess from what they originally did carries so much weight into their new field, success feels inevitable. 

There is perhaps no company that fits this description more accurately than Apple. Founded in 1976 to originally develop and sell a personal computer in the proceeding 46 years they have gone on to unparalleled levels of success and have operations in a countless number of industries. 

From music to tv, film to technology, Apples reach has grown to such a scale that nearly every human on the planet will have interacted with one of their products at one point or another. An area which they moved into in 2010 was the literary and publishing industry with the release of Apple Books (initially called iBooks at the time). 

Self-Publishing Company

In this Apple Books review, we will break down exactly what Apple Books is, the services they provide and any other information you need to know.

Apple Books History

Apple Books was initially called iBooks and launched in 2010 in conjunction with the iPad. Later that year it was made available on the iPhone & iPod Touch too. It is not too much of a stretch to imagine why Apple delved into this market. Broadly speaking, it is safe to assume this was due to two reasons. 

Firstly, the Kindle had been released 3 years earlier in 2007 to enormous success, so there was clearly an appetite to evolve the practice of reading books away from physical copies and for readers to embrace a digital product.

Secondly, Kindle was developed by Amazon and although Apple and Amazon operate in different fields there is still a large amount of overlap and crossover and it is natural for there to be competitive business decision making when customers and the decision of where they spend their money is up for grabs. 

Apple Books – What do they do?

Apple Books describes itself as a place to ‘read, listen and discover. All in one place’. It is the single destination for all the books and audiobooks any customer would be seeking.

Apple Books has both a Book Store and Audiobook Store for users to find the perfect book to read or listen to.

Users can also monitor what they have read and wish to read in the future, as well as set up their own reading goals and targets to provide tangible measures to track their reading habits. All of this can be done in one app across all Apple devices. 

Apple Books also contains various features for users, which we will outline below.

Reading Now – described by Apple as a ‘digital nightstand’ the Reading Now tab aims to make it super easy to get to the right page in the right book as quickly as possible. It also contains customised recommendations based on prior books read.

Library – Users are able to fully customise their own library of books, similar to how music listeners can create playlists

Book Store – Users can enter the central hub of Apple Books to browse all available books including their cover art, descriptions, author profiles and reviews. Apple also provides bestseller lists, selections of curated titles and others to help introduce new works to readers

Audiobooks – Users can also download audiobooks from the same location available to listen to on any supporting Apple device as well as CarPlay & Apple Watch

Apple Books – Benefits / Services for Writers 

Writers wishing to publish their work and make it available within Apple Books will have a few steps to follow and a few benefits that can expect upon doing so.

Apple Books for Authors aims to guide the writer through every step of the journey from structuring the story to packaging and selling it within the store, they also include various resources to help grow sales and track performance.

The process is fairly simple. All a writer needs to do is ensure they have an Apple account, prepare the word document of the book text and then submit and publish the file. A full breakdown of each step and what’s involved can be found on the Apple Books website.

Upon completion, writers will have access to a number of resources to assist them. These include data tracking to understand sales, promotional tools to help readers discover their work, assistance with cover design, interviews with renowned writers to help inspire and digital narration tools to help turn the book into an audiobook and open up a second channel for readers to discover and download their work.

Writers also receive impressive 70% royalties on every ebook regardless of price, which is considerably higher than many other e-book stores. 

Apple Books Review – Final Verdict 

In summary, Apple Books is an impressive digital platform for purchasing and reading e-books and audiobooks that offers a wide variety of titles from various genres and authors. It provides a convenient and seamless reading experience across Apple devices, with features such as note-taking, highlighting, and syncing reading progress.

Additionally, Apple Books provides personalized recommendations based on users' reading history and preferences. With its intuitive and user-friendly interface, Apple Books is a great option for anyone who wants to read on the go or explore new titles from the comfort of their own device.

While there are other similar digital book platforms available, Apple Books does stand out for its seamless integration with the Apple ecosystem, making it a go-to choice for Apple users. However, for those who are not already invested in the Apple ecosystem, it may be worth considering other options to find the best fit for their needs. 

Overall, Apple Books is a valuable resource for book lovers looking to read conveniently and discover new titles, but it is important to weigh the benefits and drawbacks against other digital book platforms to determine the best fit for one's individual needs.

Writers considering where best to publish their work will need to take all of the above into account and may find it most useful to make their book available on Apple Books, alongside other stores in order to maximise reach and potential readership.

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