Google Play Books Update Brings Improved Audiobooks Controls & Sharing

About two months ago, Google Play Books picked up the ability to play audiobooks natively and overall, the experience was pretty good.  But Google is wanting to make the experience better, especially when audiobooks are played in conjunction with Google Assistant.

First, you now have what Google is calling Smart Resume.  When you are interrupted by something on your phone and you need to pause your audiobook mid-sentence, when you return, Smart Resume will rewind you back to the beginning of the word or sentence you were on so you can pick back up where you left off.  Prior to this update, you had to manually rewind so this make that feature far more helpful.

 

Bookmarks are now supported in audiobooks in Google Play Books.  Now you can save a favorite quote or moment in an audiobook by simply tapping the bookmark icon.  That spot in the audio will be saved for you to revisit at any time.

Speed controls have also been improved in this update.  You can now listen to audiobooks at 3x speed or slow down to .5x.  Finally, you can also share with your Family Library.  This allows you to share it will up to five family members for free.  13 new countries were added to family sharing, including Belgium, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, Chile, Mexico, Japan (audiobooks only) and South Africa.

Look for these updates to be coming to Google Play Books over the next few days.