Just last month I posted about the last Amazon change where they no longer allow Android users to download Kindle books or Audible Ebooks.
Since then I’ve done more digging and found that this isn’t entirely Amazon’s fault. The blame needs to be laid at the feet of Google. They pushed this change by changing their policy of how payments must be collected.
Amazon’s change was necessary “to remain in compliance with updated Google Play Store policies,” Amazon said in their email.
All Googles Fault
Google owns Android. Notification went out from Android, that all Android apps must use the Google Play billing system to charge for “in-app features and services.” This includes digital content, subscription services, upgraded versions of a free app and cloud services like data.
Interestingly enough, this doesn’t affect the sale of physical objects like groceries and clothes or for peer-to-peer payments or gambling that takes place on apps.
Google takes a 30% cut of transactions on its Play Store billing system. Since this is the only payment system allowed now, the price is too hefty even for Amazon.
Now There are More Changes.
Now there is another change that affects authors. For the past several years, Amazon has used MOBI formatting as their primary file uploading system on Amazon, disregarding the more popular EPUB file used by all other ebook distributors.
Starting in late 2020, Amazon began phasing out the MOBI file and recently made an announcement that they will no longer accept MOBI files.
Amazon has embraced EPUB
This change came gradually. In 2020 they began recommending EPUB over MOBI for ebooks. In 2021 they no longer accepted MOBI files for ebooks. And now, in 2022, they have stopped accepting MOBI files for Kindle. Amazon has embraced EPUB.
My first reaction was horror. I was used to MOBI flies and used them often when sending out free book. I wondered how this would fit into my personal system. As I looked into it more, I realized that the only real change was for the better.
Change Is For The Better.
Change isn’t always bad. While there are some downsides, this is an excellent development for Amazon and for authors. For one thing, we no longer need to create two different file types when constructing our ebook for the markets. Only one EPUB file is needed. We can still send free books to contest winners and ARC readers.
Here is a great YouTube videos to help explain the process of sending out EPUB files to your winners and ARC readers. It’s created by Dave Chesson of Kindlepreneur. He’s one of my favorite “go-tos.” If you’re not subscribed to him, correct that right now. 🙂