A company that once started as an online bookseller now sells pretty much every retail product under the sun, besides offering a host of accompanying and standalone services.
Kindle Unlimited is one of Amazon’s offerings for people who love reading. Though not as widespread as the majority of Amazon’s other services.
Is Kindle Unlimited Free for Prime Members? Kindle Unlimited is a separate Amazon service, you need not be a Prime member to gain Kindle Unlimited access. Your Prime membership won’t help you get Kindle Unlimited for a discounted price.
Kindle Unlimited is certainly gaining traction.
If you are an Amazon Prime member and have a penchant for reading, you may want to know whether your Prime membership status makes you eligible for Kindle Unlimited access.
Keep reading to gain some much-needed clarity on the matter.
What is Amazon Prime?
Amazon Prime is Amazon’s paid subscription service that’s more than just next-day or 2-day shipping.
The subscription offers you access to a range of other, non-shopping benefits. If you shop regularly at Amazon, the shipping perks make Prime a no-brainer.
And even if you are not a regular Amazon shopper and do not find value in the free and expedited shipping services and the shopping discounts, some of the other benefits that come with the subscription may make you reassess your decision.
Perhaps, the biggest reasons why Amazon has more than 100 million Prime members onboard are its streaming services – Prime Video and Prime Music.
Prime Photos that offers secure, unlimited cloud-based storage for your photos is another solid perk.
Other benefits include Music Unlimited deals, free Twitch Prime games, FreeTime Unlimited discounts, credits for video game pre-orders, Kindle First early access, rewards card, etc.
For Amazon Prime, you’ll have to shell out $12.99 per month or $119 per year – if you live in the US.
The first 30 days of the membership is free.
You may choose to cancel your membership before the trial period expires.
Students with a valid .edu email address would benefit from a free trial for up to six months and also discounted prices on the subscription once the trial period is over.
Kindly note Amazon regularly expands Prime membership benefits.
Therefore, by the time you read this, a lot more features may have been added to the service.
What is Amazon Prime Reading?
Amazon Prime Reading is a service that lets you access a solid assortment of Kindle e-books, children’s books, popular magazines, short reads, and comics.
You just need a Kindle app on your mobile device to access Prime Reading.
Most importantly, the service is a part of your Prime subscription.
This means you’ll need not pay a penny more for Prime Reading if you’re already a Prime subscriber. Prime Reading also comprises books with audio narration.
The more-than-1,000 titles offered through the service are curated by Amazon editors.
Do not expect Prime Reading to afford the bestsellers or the newer titles.
But if you are new to reading, Prime Reading would be a great start. Also, the service’s magazine selection is pretty decent.
Entertainment Weekly, Men’s Health, Martha Stewart Living, etc. are some of the titles in there.
What is Kindle Unlimited?
If you are a bookworm or prefer reading books over streaming video content, Kindle Unlimited is your Godsend.
With more than a million e-books, Kindle Unlimited is approximately a third of what the whole Kindle Store has to offer.
Amazon sells its own line of e-book readers – called the Kindle – and recommends reading on its e-reading devices.
However, Kindle Unlimited can be accessed on a smartphone, tablet, or any mobile device where you could download and install the Kindle app.
You also get thousands of audiobooks on Kindle Unlimited but not all e-books have an audio version.
To confirm if an e-book can be downloaded as an audiobook, look for the headphone symbol above the Read for Free box.
If the option is available, it means it’s available for automatic access. Even if you do not have the time to read books, Kindle Unlimited still offers value.
Kindle Unlimited Subscription
The subscription includes access to millions of e-books, audiobooks, and magazines.
As a Kindle Unlimited member, you cannot buy books. However, you can borrow them and read as many as you can during your subscription period.
You may set aside up to 10 books for reading at any given time.
Kindle Unlimited Price
For a $9.99 monthly fee, Kindle Unlimited isn’t necessarily cheap.
But if you are a voracious reader, you could extract some serious value for the $9.99 you would spend every month.
Also, Amazon comes up with multiple Kindle Unlimited deals time and again. The deals are usually offered on Prime Day, or during Cyber Monday and Black Friday sales.
Moreover, you can save on the monthly price if you subscribe for a six-month or larger period membership.
You would get a 25 percent discount on a six-month subscription, which means your cost would be $44.95 instead of $59.94.
Similarly, Amazon offers a 33 percent and 40 percent discount on its 12-month and 24-month Kindle Unlimited subscriptions, respectively.
Though rare, you could even get a three-month Kindle Unlimited subscription for $1, offering you a whopping 96 percent discount. However, it’s only for first-time subscribers.
Kindle Unlimited Free Trial
Kindle Unlimited offers you a 30-day free trial to try out the service. The trial period should be sufficient time to peruse the titles and also get used to the interface.
If you like what you see and read, go ahead and subscribe.
Also, you can cancel your membership well before the 30 days and still be able to keep the benefits of the membership for the stipulated 30-day period.
For example, if you cancel your membership on the 10th day of your free trial, you would still be able to use the service as a member for the remaining 20 days.
If you happen to cancel a pre-paid or premium subscription, you will not be issued any partial refund.
Kindle Unlimited for Students
If you are a student and already subscribed to Amazon Prime with a .edu email address, you can avail Kindle Unlimited services for three months for free.
This means you would be saving $29.97 in the process. You can avail of this Kindle Unlimited offer even if your Amazon Prime subscription is in its trial phase.
Prime Reading vs Kindle Unlimited
The biggest difference between Prime Reading and Kindle Unlimited is the fact that the latter is a standalone service and is not bundled in with your Prime membership unlike the former.
Not to mention, comparing the two would be like comparing a Ford with a BMW.
Prime Reading is a far cry compared to Kindle Unlimited. It’s not packed with features or even as many e-books as the latter.
But the more than 1,000 titles – a decent collection of books, magazines, audiobooks, comics, etc. – it has to offer are nothing to scoff at.
And like Kindle Unlimited, Prime Reading does rotate its titles every now and then. This means you are not stuck with the same 1,000 titles for months.
However, Kindle Unlimited is not guaranteed to offer every book under the sun.
Due to certain contract limitations, books from large publishers may not be available on Kindle Unlimited right on their day of release.
Some could take a few weeks, months, or even a year or two to show up on Kindle Unlimited after the hardcover version’s release.
And if the book is not there in Kindle Unlimited, it would certainly not be there on Prime Reading. However, the e-books missing from Unlimited could be available on the Kindle Store.
So, should you pay for Kindle Unlimited or stick with Prime Reading?
If you are new to reading or do not foresee reading more than a couple of books a month, you should be fine with Prime Reading.
Maybe get done with it first and then consider subscribing to Kindle Unlimited.
However, if you are a seasoned reader and can name authors of books by titles, you would absolutely love Kindle Unlimited.
So our question is, “Is Kindle Unlimited Free for Prime Members?”
Let’s dive in further.
Through Prime, Amazon offers a host of benefits and services to its members. However, it also offers standalone services that have little or no connection to Prime.
Kindle Unlimited is one such service. In other words, if you are a Prime member, you would not be given access to Kindle Unlimited for free.
Also, since Kindle Unlimited is a separate service, you need not be a Prime member for Kindle Unlimited access. Your Prime membership also will not help you avail Kindle Unlimited for a discounted price.
However, Amazon offers quite a few other reading services either for free or which do not entail massive monthly subscription fees.
Besides Prime Reading, Amazon First Reads is another medium through which you can read e-books for free.
Each month, editors at Amazon curate more than a dozen soon-to-be-released books and offer Prime members the opportunity to grab one – for free, not having to return the book.
Amazon owns Audible, the popular audiobook streaming service. However, not many Prime members know that they have access to a fairly discreet service called Audible Channels.
It has a small assortment of audiobooks when compared to Audible, but it’s free for Prime members. The books cannot be downloaded for free but can be streamed an unlimited number of times.
If you would like to download a book, you’ll have to purchase it.
The aforementioned reading services let you wet your feet before you actually dive into the sea of books.
Once you truly develop a liking for reading and find it worthy enough to spend money on, you may decide to invest in Kindle Unlimited.
As mentioned before, Amazon constantly brings new services under the fold of Prime or merges existing ones with Prime.
Kindle Unlimited, therefore, may or may not become free or available for a discount for Prime members in the future. There are no such plans, however, for the foreseeable future.