Mobileread
Listening to MP3 books on iPhone
#1  Hampshire Nanny 08-30-2014, 02:46 PM
I have been using the Audible app on my iPhone to listen to audio books in the car. (I have a cable which connects the earphone jack on the iPhone to the Aux port in the car stereo.) This is the only "portable" audiobook device that I have used.

This summer, I gladly downloaded the free audiobooks provided by Sync. These books are made up of multiple MP3 files. What app can I use on the iPhone to play them? And is there some way to make a playlist so that the files play in the right order without having to touch the iPhone between "tracks"?
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#2  pidgeon92 08-30-2014, 03:04 PM
My favorite app is the Ambling Audiobook Player. It'll work fine with your non-DRMd MP3 files. Just add the MP3 files to iTunes, then you can access those files through the app.

There is a free, Lite version, and Pro version with more features that's maybe $7.99?

Alternately, you can listen to the books just fine via the Music app on your iPhone. Click the More... button at the bottom right of the main screen to see the audiobooks option.

FYI, for both options, your MP3 files in iTunes must have Media Kind set as "Audiobook." Highlight the files, right click and choose "get info," click on the options tab and make sure Media Kind is set as "Audiobook." Also make sure that "Remember Playback Position" is checked.
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#3  tilia 08-30-2014, 04:07 PM
If you like the Audible app, you can listen to non-audible books with it as well. As long as you set media type the way pidgeon92 describes, then the app will list them under the itunes tab. I don't have a list of all the formats it supports, but at least mp3 and m4b.
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#4  Synamon 08-30-2014, 04:09 PM
When you add mp3 audiobooks into iTunes, edit the Info and change the format to Audiobook from Music on the Options tab and you won't need a playlist (selecting Remember Position and Skip when Shuffling is also a good idea). Transfer (drag and drop) the audiobooks to your iPhone.

On your phone audiobooks you add via iTunes end up in your Music app and you can play them using the Music app, no additional app required.

If you like using the Audible app, it can access mp3 audiobooks directly, just click on the iTunes tab, instead of Cloud or Device, for a list of audiobooks added via iTunes on your phone.
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#5  Hampshire Nanny 08-30-2014, 06:25 PM
Thanks, folks. So do I need iTunes on my computer as well as on the iPhone? The only iTunes I have (so far) is just what came installed on the iPhone and the iPad. The only content I've put into iTunes has gone directly into the device over the internet.
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#6  meeera 08-31-2014, 12:34 AM
I rebuild MP3s into proper audiobooks using Audiobook Builder first. It works a treat. Plays in Music app, under the "Audiobooks" section.
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#7  pidgeon92 08-31-2014, 02:22 PM
Quote Hampshire Nanny
Thanks, folks. So do I need iTunes on my computer as well as on the iPhone?
I'm pretty sure you do, as the MP3 files are unlikely to be categorized as as "audiobooks" and the apps really do need them to be categorized as such.

I'm assuming you had downloaded the Sync audiobooks to your computer? How had you planned to transfer them to the iPhone? For me, iTunes is by far the best way to transfer media to my iPhone.
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#8  Laurablue 09-01-2014, 12:55 PM
You should be able to transfer them to iPhone using the desktop Overdrive Media Console, but they will show up in your Music app. If they were tagged as audiobooks, they would show up in that section of the Music player, but mostly the books I've downloaded have been tagged as Fiction, or Business, Children's, Fantasy etc. IIRC, the tracks of each "album" in the Music app will play in order by default, but it won't save your place if you listen to something else.

I recommend backing up the files in any case - sometime ago, Overdrive updated their iOS app, it wiped out people's libraries, and the free SYNC books could not be restored.
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#9  David Munch 10-01-2014, 01:18 PM
Quote Hampshire Nanny
Thanks, folks. So do I need iTunes on my computer as well as on the iPhone? The only iTunes I have (so far) is just what came installed on the iPhone and the iPad. The only content I've put into iTunes has gone directly into the device over the internet.
The Music app which comes with the phone is the equivalent of iTunes on the phone, for playback of music and audiobooks.
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