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When You Can’t Read: Listen. Amazon Launches Whispersync in the UK

Writing.ie | Guest Bloggers | Ink Stains

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When you can’t read, now you can listen to your Kindle, switching between reading and listening to your Kindle books in the Kindle App at the tap of a button. Amazon say,
“Just pop in your headphones, tap the button, and keep the story going…in the car, in the gym, in the kitchen, wherever your day takes you. Whenever your eyes are occupied but your mind is free, your story is ready for listening”

Whispersync for Voice lets users switch between reading ebooks and listening to audio books without losing their place, thanks to Audible integration, the audio entertainment company acquired by Amazon  in 2008. There are around 25,000 professionally narrated audiobooks available on Audible in the UK, so plenty to choose from.

To add this feature to your Kindle books, you use Matchmaker, which scans your ebook library to see which ones have an audio incarnation on Audible. It’s not free, though, with upgrades starting from £0.99.

If you’ve got a Kindle Fire HD or an Android device you can also read and listen simultaneously with real-time highlighting. Apparently it’s called Immersion Reading and that’s what it does: immerses you in a story by narrating and highlighting the text as you read. Amazon says “It sparks an extra connection that boosts engagement, comprehension, and retention, taking you deeper into the book.” Personally I can’t imagine anything more annoying that someone else’s voice competing with yours in your head, BUT it could be extremely useful for anyone learning to read or needing reading support. Worth a thought.

 

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