Using EPUB Files

Bob Swanson offers his books in a number of electronic formats. This web page describes how to view the EPUB files published. The EPUB format is an international standard. It is described on the Wikipedia EPUB Discussion. This reading format is used by nearly all electronic readers EXCEPT Amazon Kindle (MOBI or AZW3). It is the typical format read by the NOOK device.

At this point, you should have one or more ".epub" files on your computer, phone, or tablet. Generally, you received the file from a sales operation, and/or downloaded it to your device.

Import and Read EPUB File Using Google Books

The Google Play Books app is available on various phones and tablets. You can upload and read EPUB-formatted books using this app. See: this article on uploading EPUB books into the Google Play Books app. In addition, Google Play Books is available on browsers using a computer. Go to the link: to upload and read EPUB books on the Google Play Books website. You must have a Google account to use this service.

View EPUB File Using Firefox Web Browser and EPUB Reader Addon

If you use the Firefox web browser on your computer, you can read EPUB-formatted book files directly in your browser by using an "Addon" software package. See: EPUB Reader Addon for Firefox Browser.

Copy EPUB File to NOOK Device

Instructions for moving EPUB files from your computer to the NOOK are located at article on the transfer of EPUB files from computer to NOOK. The instructions are similar to those for the Kindle, in that you connect your device to your computer with the USB cable that came with the device.

Copy EPUB File to Computer, Tablet, or Phone with Reader Software

There are a large number of EPUB reader software packages for computers, phones, and tablets.

Copy EPUB File to Android Phone with Reader Software

On the Android phone, you start an EPUB reader program, and either "open" the EPUB file, or "add to bookshelf". Note that you can read EPUB files using several Apps on Android phones and tablets, including : "Moon+ Reader", "FBReader", "Cool Reader", "Aldiko", "Mantano Free Reader", and others.

Copy EPUB File to Windows Computer

This article about various EPUB readers for Windows contains useful information. In particular, Adobe Digital Editions software for Windows handles these EPUB files quite well. When you execute the Digital Editions software, you simply use the "add to bookshelf" option to insert your EPUB file into the reader.

Another EPUB viewer available on Windows and other systems is embedded in a free document creator called Calibre. This document convert/creator comes installed with viewers for all popular electronic publication types, including a Kindle and EPUB viewer.

Copy EPUB File to Other Computer Systems

We have already mentioned Calibre. This free document convert/creator comes installed with viewers for all popular electronic publication types, including a Kindle and EPUB viewer.

I am not as familiar with the Apple iPhones and iPads as I am with Windows and Android. Check this article on using MOBI and EPUB files on the iPhone and Ipad for more information.

There are several EPUB readers available on Linux systems, including FBReader (with versions for Windows and MACOS, as well as Calibre (mentioned above).

EPUB File Issues

My experience with EPUB format is generally good. Most of the readers can handle interactive content (where you click on a link and move to a different part of the document). For me, however, the chief drawback seems to be illustrations. I am trying to create books where illustrations are key, and which may require detailed viewing. While the Kindle does a pretty good job of handling images, the images in most EPUB readers seem to be fixed in size, and with one exception, you cannot zoom into an illustration. Note that Calibre (mentioned elsewhere on this page) is the one exception, allowing separate viewing and zooming of images. I believe that I can provide several other formats that do a better job of displaying images in my books.


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Updated January 20, 2018