What is an ePub file and How to use it?
When someone talks about eBooks or Kindle books, he is probably referring to formats such as .ePub or Mobi. In today’s digital world, the way we read material has undergone massive changes. We owe this to eBooks. With devices like Nook, Amazon Kindle or even Tablets, the way we buy, read and store books has changed. This revolution is basing on the converting our works to digital formats. The front runner amongst them is the ePub format. An epub file is important because any pdf or doc file can be converted into it. Epub format creates a more involving experience to the reader. To convert PDF to Epub, Or Docx to Epub for free, all you need are some online tools. An ePub book can be used in most devices, excepting of course Kindle. Kindle requires a .mobi format. Hence, we need to convert ePub.
What is a Mobi format and How to use it in Kindle Store?
The .mobi format is an Amazon exclusive format for its Kindle devices. For every self-publisher to self-publish on Kindle, the work needs to be converted into .mobi. However, for someone who has created .epub from .docx, again to convert ePub to Mobi would seem a long process. However, this process is simple now owing to Kindle Publishing tools freely available. All one needs to worry about is using Kindle Previewer. Having said that, that isn’t the only way to convert ePub to .mobi.
Ways to convert ePub to Mobi File:
Services like Zamzam or Online ePub converters are used to some extent in providing Mobi files. However, over the years, there have been issues of compatibility and loss of text in them. Either page counts are compromised, or alignment is lost, or times a range of data is skipped. Due to these factors, It is best to use Amazon Kindle Publishing Tools to convert epub files.
Amazon offers the following methods to do this :
A. Kindle Direct Publishing ( KDP ) Uploader
B. Kindle Direct Publishing ( KDP ) Previewer
C. Kindle Gen
Let’s see how each of these methods give the optimum result of conversion.
A. KDP Uploader:
Perhaps the easiest method of converting ePub to Mobi is uploading your file directly to Kindle page. To do that, you need to register at KDP and upload your ePub file. When you click convert/preview, Amazon automatically converts it into.Mobi. You can save this file as well. The Steps involved in this process are as follows
- Create a KDP account and complete your profile with contact details and banking information. Though Bank information is not entirely necessary at this point, to receive your royalty you need to have it.
- From the home page select “Add new title” at the upper left-hand corner.
- Instead of submitting the book, you need to choose the Upload button to select your epub file. It should upload and convert ePub within a few minutes.
- A Preview option appears, as soon as the upload is finished,
- Upon clicking it, A new window should appear with your converted .mobi file ready.
B. The Kindle Previewer:
Although Kindle Uploader works for many people, it can be problematic for those using limited internet services. Amazon in the recent years has come up with the solution for it. To skip the whole process of repeated uploads and downloads, Amazon offers The Kindle Previewer. This is a particular software which is available for free download. The basic flaw of Uploading is that every time you need to change anything in the preview, you need to repeat the process all over again. This is negated in Previewer.
Steps involved in this are:
- The first step required is downloading Amazon Previewer from this link (https://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000765261).
- Run the installation into C drive, once the download is complete.
- Drag and Drop your ePub file into the Previewer and click on preview.
- Before creating a show, an option to save the converted file allows you to save it onto your system.
- The converted files (.mobi) are automatically stored in the same folder as the epub file.
- You can use this to preview your works and submit it for publishing if everything looks good.
C. Using Amazon Kindlegen:
Also, downloading Amazon Kindlegen is the other method of ensuring that your file is converted entirely. Kindlegen is the core software on which both Kindle uploader and Kindle Previewer works on. It works on command line basis to convert epub files. Kindlegen can automate the whole process of conversion with its options. The above two methods are more viable and effective, however. When kindlegen is run through the command line, other additional functions such as error reporting, tips and help messages activate. These tools can easily convert ePub to Mobi. They act as a guide to the proper and perfect conversion of the ebook.
Steps Involved are as follows:
- Download the Kindle Gen application for desktop usage here (https://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000765211).
- Right-click the zip file, select Extract All, and enter the folder name as c:\KindleGen.
- Open a command prompt by selecting Start menu > All Programs > Accessories > Command Prompt.
- Follow the instructions for PC users, mentioned in this link to effectively use KindleGen (https://kindlegen.s3.amazonaws.com/Readme.txt).
- For Mac users, Open up the terminal and move into cd path/to/kindlegen
- Run Kindlegen on file: kindlegen path/to/epub/file
- Kindlegen will then convert it into .mobi.
However, on the web, you may find other converters as well for free of cost. The main amongst them are Calibre, Online ePub converters, etc. However, it is the best practice to stick with Amazon Kindle tools to convert to Mobi. Because of distortion and incompatibility, most of these software’s give out an output which might not be perfect for use. Amazon ensures that Mobi conversions meet its ebook specifications and measures.