Audiobooks

Discussions on how emerging technology can assist the distribution of media content through mobile, kiosks, Internet, social networks, etc.
Hedrick-p40
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Audiobooks

Postby Hedrick-p40 » Tue Oct 12, 2010 10:07 am

This past October General Conference we introduced a new format: M4B

We've created audiobook files for each session in multiple languages. The M4B format allows for bookmarks and lets the listener skip and jump around to different speakers within the session. Also, the bookmark feature lets a listener pick up exactly where they left off. However, these features are only used on certain MP3 players, such as iPods. Other MP3 players can play M4B files, but do not always recognize the audiobook features (this could easily change in time with a simple firmware update on their part).

For iPod users, M4B files will show up in your Audiobooks folder rather than being shuffled around in music playlists.

We're always testing out audiobooks on different MP3 devices. And so if there is anyone using MP3 players that would like to put General Conference audiobooks on their personal players, we would love to hear your feedback on how they work. Thank you!

General Conference Audiobooks URL:
http://lds.org/library/display/0,4945,49-1-5219-2,00.html

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gregwanderson
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Postby gregwanderson » Tue Oct 12, 2010 11:42 am

Thank you for this! Another advantage of the audiobook m4b format is that it allows iPod users to listen at a faster-than-normal speed without a higher-than-normal pitch. Newer iPods allow this with podcasts but, with older iPods, only audiobooks will play faster.

In iTunes you can go to the "info>options" setting on a given file and tell it under "media kind" to treat it like an audiobook even if it isn't in the m4b format. But I appreciate that you're creating files which will be recognized as audio books already.

It might be nice to offer the Standard Works audio book files in the m4b format too. Of course, that's asking someone to do a lot of busywork. Then again, I downloaded the MP3 files and converted them to m4b for my own use and it wasn't such a bad task (although the extra encoding step I performed probably took away some of the audio quality).

Hedrick-p40
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More to come

Postby Hedrick-p40 » Tue Oct 12, 2010 1:25 pm

We are looking at publishing more audiobooks in the near future. The standard works is definitely on the list.

We're also looking at other avenues like Audible, so that our files will be made available on iTunes and Amazon as well (Audible is the 3rd party behind iTunes and Amazon audiobooks).

For now, the LDS audiobooks will be available from the lds.org website. I'll post the links once we get the others out there. I'm glad there is an audience for them!

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nbflint
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Postby nbflint » Thu Oct 21, 2010 12:04 pm

This is fantastic! I would love you have the Scriptures in this format.


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nbflint
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Postby nbflint » Wed Oct 27, 2010 12:42 pm

Hedrick wrote:For now, the LDS audiobooks will be available from the lds.org website. I'll post the links once we get the others out there. I'm glad there is an audience for them!


Could you use any help? I'd be happy to lend some time.


Hedrick-p40
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Update: Audible

Postby Hedrick-p40 » Fri Nov 05, 2010 1:38 pm

We're looking at getting our audiobooks on to iTunes. Since Audible is the big backer behind audiobooks on iTunes, we've been chatting with them on how to get our content on there.

Here are some questions I have and I would love to hear your feedback:

1. The Book of Mormon is about 25 hours long. Would you like the audiobook version to be split up in to 1, 2 or 3 M4B audiobook files?

2. What's the maximum length you would like to see on an M4B audiobook file?

3. Other than the scriptures, what are some other audiobooks you would like to listen to?

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nbflint
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Postby nbflint » Mon Nov 15, 2010 1:06 pm

1. The Book of Mormon is about 25 hours long. Would you like the audiobook version to be split up in to 1, 2 or 3 M4B audiobook files?

2. Having the entire book in one file is a huge plus for me. Does m4b allow bookmarking to other m4b files? If so, that would give the benefit of one big file with the convenience of smaller files.

3. Other than the scriptures, what are some other audiobooks you would like to listen to?

Gospel Principles
General Conference
Ensigns
Lesson Manuals
Preach My Gospel
World Wide Leadership Trainings


highv0ltage
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Postby highv0ltage » Tue Jul 12, 2011 5:08 pm

I am interested in this. Have there been any updates lately?

spellsworth
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Audiobooks for Android

Postby spellsworth » Thu Sep 15, 2011 9:29 pm

I have an Android smartphone. I greatly prefer to have the conferences in an audiobook format so I can resume where I left off. I downloaded the audiobook in iTunes, but was not able to transfer it to my Android because of DRM issues. It would be great to have this removed or to have them available in Audible. Audible would be preferred because it is available to both Apple and non-Apple players. I tried to get my wife to listen to conference on her mp3 player, but it was too frustrating for her because she could not resume (no bookmarking on mp3) upon returning. She has Audible on her mp3 player.

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johnshaw
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Postby johnshaw » Fri Sep 16, 2011 7:58 am

I would second this comment. I do not know the particulars of audible format, but if we could have each of these books available for purchase or free from the audible store, I can download those anywhere, anytime... iphone, android, tablets, desktop, etc...


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