(Yicai Global) March 29 -- The audiobooks market continues its development trend in China despite Amazon.Com Inc. has not unveiled audiobook services on Kindle devices in the country yet, said a senior executive of the company’s China business.
Amazon has extensive operating experience with audiobooks around the world and it has purchased publisher Brilliance Audio Co. in 2007 and the distributor Audible Inc. in 2008, said Liu Shu, vice president of Kindle’s China business in an interview. "At present, Amazon has already synchronized Audible's services to Kindle in some markets, but it does not include China," Liu added.
In China, readers' huge demand for audiobooks is driving the rapid development of the market. The online community platform Zhihu, developed by Beijing Zhihu Technology Co., and the Shanghai Zendai Himalayas Network Technology Co’s audio sharing platform Ximalaya FM have all launched audiobook services and attract users by employing celebrities.
Amazon officially unveiled Kindle in the Chinese market in June 2013. China became Kindle’s largest sales market worldwide last year, and users could read more than 500,000 e-books on its Chinese e-bookstore.
China’s enthusiastic readers are now increasingly willing to pay for knowledge. To meet such demand, Kindle launched an important monthly content service, KU e-book, priced at CNY12 (USD7.5) per month or CNY118 for the entire year. China now is KU’s third largest market in the world, with its users’ average reading percentage reaching 2.5 times that of non-KU users.
However, Amazon has yet to announce when Kindle users can listen to audiobooks in China.