Difference Wiki

E-book vs. Audio Book: What's the Difference?

Edited by Harlon Moss || By Janet White || Published on November 8, 2023
E-book; A digital version of a printed book. Audio Book' A spoken narration of a book.

Key Differences

An E-book, or electronic book, is a digital format of a printed book that can be read on computers, e-readers, tablets, or other electronic devices. Audio Book: In contrast, an audio book is a recording of someone narrating the content of a book, often with added voice acting, music, or sound effects.
E-books offer the convenience of adjusting font sizes, styles, and background colors to enhance the reading experience. Audio Book: Audio books, on the other hand, offer the luxury of multitasking, allowing users to listen while they drive, exercise, or work.
To consume an E-book, one must actively engage in reading, which can be an immersive experience with visual feedback. Audio Book: Audio books provide a passive consumption method, relying on auditory senses, making them suitable for those with visual impairments.
E-books can be interactive, containing hyperlinks, multimedia elements, and annotations. Audio Book: Audio books, being audio-only, lack such interactivity but can evoke vivid imaginations through voice modulations and soundscapes.
E-books require devices with screen displays like e-readers or smartphones. Audio Book: Audio books need playback devices with speakers or headphones, such as smartphones or dedicated players.

Comparison Chart


Digital text file (e.g., PDF, EPUB)
Audio recording (e.g., MP3, AAC)

Consumption Method



Can have hyperlinks and multimedia
Mostly non-interactive


Active engagement (reading)
Passive engagement (listening)

Device Requirement

E-reader, tablet, computer, smartphone
Audio player, smartphone, computer

E-book and Audio Book Definitions


A digital representation of a print publication.
I purchased an E-book version of my favorite novel.

Audio Book

An oral rendition of a book's content, sometimes with added dramatization.
His favorite Audio Book narrator has a soothing voice.


An electronic document readable on a computer or electronic device.
Students prefer E-book versions for their convenience.

Audio Book

A recording of a book or text being read aloud.
I listened to the Audio Book during my long drive.


A downloadable and portable electronic publication.
She has dozens of E-books stored on her tablet.

Audio Book

A narrated alternative to reading physical or electronic books.
For those who find reading challenging, an Audio Book can be a great solution.


A digital file containing text, images, or both, often replicating a physical book's content.
The library has a vast collection of E-books for members.

Audio Book

A spoken version of written material.
The Audio Book version brought the story to life with its dramatic narration.


A virtual alternative to traditional printed materials.
E-books are an eco-friendly alternative to printed books.

Audio Book

A literary work converted into sound for playback.
She enjoys Audio Book adaptations of classic novels.


A book whose contents are in an electronic format.

Audio Book

Rare spelling of audiobook


Electronic book, a book published in electronic form.


Can I print an E-book?

While technically possible, E-book licenses often restrict printing.

How do you read an E-book?

You read an E-book using devices like e-readers, tablets, or computers.

Can E-books have interactive content?

Yes, E-books can contain hyperlinks, multimedia, and interactive elements.

What is an Audio Book?

An Audio Book is a spoken narration of a book.

What is an E-book?

An E-book is a digital version of a printed book.

Are Audio Books beneficial for visually impaired individuals?

Absolutely, Audio Books provide an accessible format for those who can't read traditional or E-books.

Can I make notes while listening to an Audio Book?

While the Audio Book itself can't be annotated, you can make separate notes as you listen.

Are E-books better for the environment?

E-books eliminate the need for paper, so they can be more eco-friendly.

Do E-books require internet to read?

Once downloaded, most E-books can be read offline.

Do Audio Books often have different narrators?

Yes, Audio Books can have single or multiple narrators and may include dramatizations.

Do E-books offer adjustable font sizes?

Yes, most E-books allow readers to adjust font sizes for comfort.

Can Audio Books improve comprehension?

Yes, for some, listening can enhance understanding and retention.

How can I listen to an Audio Book?

Audio books can be played on devices like smartphones, computers, or dedicated players.

Are E-books cheaper than printed books?

Often, E-books can be cheaper, but prices vary based on publishers and platforms.

How long can Audio Books typically be?

Audio Book lengths vary, from short stories of an hour to epics lasting dozens of hours.

How do I purchase an E-book?

E-books can be bought on platforms like Amazon Kindle, Apple Books, and Google Play Books.

How are E-books and Audio Books different?

E-books are digital texts to be read, while Audio Books are narrations to be listened to.

Can I share my E-book with a friend?

E-book sharing depends on the license and platform; some allow sharing, while others don't.

Where can I find Audio Books?

Platforms like Audible, Libby, and Google Play Audiobooks offer a vast selection.

Do Audio Books consume more storage than E-books?

Typically, yes. Audio files are usually larger than digital text files.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.

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