For book lovers, nothing beats a free reading app.
You're able to find great titles and consume them anywhere you want.
You don't need any expensive apps or devices in order to use free reading apps. All you often need is access to an app store or website in order to read these books.
For people who really love books, you'll want an app that gives you access to buying digital books or audiobooks, too, so you can keep all of your titles together.
If you've been on the hunt for a good free reading app, we're going to break down some of the popular ones plus the best benefits of each one.
Free reading apps
There are many apps to choose from and each offers unique features, such as being able to read your book out loud, so you'll want to read through the details of each app.
Some things that might matter for you when it comes to finding a book app:
- Light or dark mode setting
- Font size setting
- Bookmarking parts of a book
- Remembering where you left off with a book
- Highlighting options
- Access to a bookstore or free books
- The ability to load your own PDFs or books in other formats
- Renting books
Let's go over some of the biggest free reading apps and explain the basics of each so you can find a good fit for your reading style and preferences.
Libby is one of the most popular apps because you are able to connect it to your library card so you can rent ebooks, audiobooks, magazines, and more.
You will need a library card and account in order to use the app, but once you do, you're free to use the app as much as you want.
You can download it through the Apple app store or on Google Play and read books on the go.
Keep in mind, you'll often need to get on a list for the popular books, just as you would if you were renting the physical copy of a book from your local library.
You will also have a due date with each type of media you rent, but as long as you keep up with what those are, you'll be able to read it in time. If not, they're easy to rent again so you can pick right back up where you left off.
With Libby, you can also open your rented books inside Kindle if you want a more customized reading experience.
Kindle is owned by Amazon, and while it's a great app or device to use for buying books, you can also use it for free books.
Every so often it's easy to find free books to download through Amazon Kindle. That way, you can keep them on your Kindle app and also access them from multiple different devices.
Tons of authors put their book for free on Kindle to spread the word about their work and get as many people to read it as possible. To learn how the KDP publishing process works, check out this article.
One great benefit of using Kindle is that you can also usually try a free sample of a book from the Kindle store before you buy it.
Kindle also syncs easily with Alexa, so you can program it to read your audiobooks on command in your home or office.
Kindle also offers a Kindle Unlimited program where you pay a monthly fee and can rent up to 10 eBooks or audiobooks at a time. It's not free but it's pretty cheap considering how much new books cost.
Aldiko is a great free reading app that you can customize. You can pick your favorite fonts, line spacing, dark/light mode, and overall alignment so you can read your books how your prefer.
It lets you borrow from your local library and lets you enjoy both eBooks and audiobooks. You can also import books you have purchased on other platforms so you have them all inside one convenient app.
If you do want to buy books, they have a digital bookstore you can choose from.
Wattpad is a popular platform for authors to write and share their stories. They also have an app you can use on the go to read and discover new stories.
An interesting feature about Wattpad is that you can share your thoughts and interact with some stories, since there is a community aspect to it, which fill be familiar if you're part of the fiction community on Medium.
Some stories are also written with the premise of having new chapters released on a certain schedule, which are downloaded right to your device.
If you are interested in publishing as well, Wattpad might be a good tool for you to start learning and playing around with since so many self-published authors are on there. We have a full Wattpad review here.
Google Play Books
As you can imagine, Google Play has a ton of books out there to choose from.
While it's not as many as the Kindle store, you can still customize how you want to read your books.
Google Play also has an offline dictionary if you come across a word you don't understand. It will also read your books out loud if you want to switch between reading and listening.
Apple Books is a great option for people who use Apple devices
Apple Books also offers Reading Goals so you can keep yourself accountable with your reading habit.
There is also a “reading now” tab so you can pick right back up with where you left off in your books. You can organize your books into collections based on your own preferences so you can keep similar books together.
The Kobo App lets you put all of your eBooks and audiobooks into one central home.
It works on iOS, Android, and even desktop so you have your books on almost any major device. You can import any PDFs or EPUBs into the app.
Along with being able to customize your reading experience, you can also add highlights of your books to keep your favorite parts together.
FBR Reader is an extremely versatile reading app. It currently is available on iOS, Android, Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and Chrome.
It also supports a wide variety of ebook formats such as ePub, mobi, fb2, HTML, RTF, and plain text.
If you're into computer development, they also offer an option to create your own ebook reader.
KyBook is built exclusively for iOS and supports most of the major e-book formats.
It has cloud storage and an easy way to catalogue different types of books and audiobooks so you can keep your certain types of content together.
KyBook supports many different types of content, including ones that come in comic book format such as cbr, cbz, and cbt. There are also some settings such as zooming with a double-tap that you can use.
Along with offering almost every format of eBook and audiobook imaginable, they also offer a ton of free books.
For those who like more customization than just dark or light mode and font sizes, KyBook offers a lot more.
Some customizations include:
- Auto scrolling mode
- Can do text-to-speech to read almost any book out loud
- More types of color schemes such as sepia for ease on your eyes