Different Ebook Formats: Mobi, Epub, HTML5, AZM, PDF

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Formats of E-BookFinally you’ve decided to publish your own eBook, you have put a lot of work into it, countless hours sitting in front of your laptop typing and shaping your story. It hasn’t always been easy, there were days in which your muse seemed to be ignoring your calls and days in which the sun was shining so bright in the sky that it looked like it was trying to lure you away from your work. But you didn’t give in, you knew that it would be worth it and you’ve made it! You’ve finished your book, now it’s time for people to enjoy it. The only problem now is that you have found yourself facing a new conundrum. What’s the difference between an EPUB, MOBI, HTML5, AZM, PDF file format? which one should you choose?

Today we are going to explain them all so that you can make the right choice.

EPUB
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This format was designed by the Open eBook Forum and developed by the International Digital Publishing Forum. The Epub is one of the most popular formats out there which means that almost all eReaders will be able to open it. In fact there are a lot of free tools available that will allow you to read an Epub file on your computer. Users with an iPad, an iPhone, a Sony Reader, an Android phone or a Barnes & Noble Nook will be able to read it without any problem. Not those who have a Kindle though.

MOBI
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This is the format that Amazon Kindle uses and it will only be recognised by this device. No other e-reader can open this format. There are some third party readers and apps that will allow users to open these files on computers and smartphones but the format itself has its limitations (tables will display differently, font size won’t be scaled…).

AZW
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Another format exclusive to Amazon Kindle. It’s basically the high compressed version of the Mobi format. Like the Mobi, this format can be opened on iPhones, Android phones and Blackberrys, computers and tablets thanks to Kindle apps.

HTML5
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HTML5 is not exactly a format designed for a regular e-reader but with tablets and smartphones becoming more and more common, this type of format widens the possibilities and options. It’s accesible in most internet browsers and there are already many different apps for Android, Windows, Blackberry, MAC and iOs that will open them. Among its benefits, the video and audio support and a more interactive interface.

PDF
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This format is the one you are probably more familiar with. However and although they can be read in eReaders, tablets, smartphones and computers, they’re not available in eBook stores due to their limited functionality. They are quite static. In fact, this is the format that most publishers use prior to editing the final ebook in one of the formats that we’ve mentioned above.
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So there you go, I hope this short guide has helped you to understand the difference between this formats. If you asked me, my advice would be to publish at least in both epub and mobi formats, that way you would be reaching a wider audience and your book could be sold in any ebook store, including Amazon, but I would also consider HTML5 format if you want to create an ebook with more interactivity that could be read in any browser both online and offline.

One last thing before I go, have you tried 3D Issue? with our software you can create an ebook in epub, mobi and html5 formats in just a few minutes and at the same time. It’s really easy and you don’t need any especial skills to do it. Try 3D Issue for free to day!

By Carla Rucián Iraola

 

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