Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Download The Classic Tales Direct to iOS devices!

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I love The Classic Tales, but I only have an iPad. I’m on the road, and I’d like to download an audiobook for the ride home. Does this sound familiar? Now, with a little help from some friends, you can download any title from The Classic Tales website without a computer.

Let’s face it, iPads, iPhones and iPods are great, right? But when it comes to audiobooks and music, Apple doesn’t like you to get your stuff from anywhere else. And so if you try to download an mp3 file, or an m4b audiobook file while using Safari on your iOS device, it will start streaming it in a window. No download options available. Nope. And even if you could download it, iTunes won’t recognize it.

Now, with a little finagling, we can set it up so that you can buy an audiobook from The Classic Tales website, download it and play it on your iPad, iPhone or other iOS device. These are the two things we’ve got to do: Download the file and Play it. Now, to do this, we need to pick up a couple apps at the good ol’ Apple App Store.

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Get iCabMobile at the App Store by clicking on this text. 
First we need to get a new browser that will allow us to download material from the internet on our iOS device. After trying a slew of mediocre options, I discovered iCabMobile, and it is fast becoming my browser of choice for any of my mobile devices. Despite its unfortunate name, it is a very elegant and powerful browser with a very simple and clear interface.

Get KyBook at the App Store by clicking on this text
Second, we need an app that will read any mp3, m4b, AAC or other audio files we download that are literary in nature. We need to look away from Apple (iBooks) or Amazon (Kindle). Again, I've discovered a very elegant app that really fits the bill: KyBook Reader. This app will help keep track of the audiobooks you've downloaded. It also bookmarks larger files, allows you to speed up or slow down the playback, it has a timer feature, and a very nice interface that shows the artwork and chapter:
 
If your screen goes to sleep automatically and you are still listening to the audiobook, you can still pause the program on the iOS main screen. It's kind of perfect. And it's free. 


Side note: a nice consequence of taking the time to work outside these two giants, Apple and Amazon, is that now they aren't tracking your listening/reading habits. Bonus!


Okay, so now you've got these two new apps fresh on your iPad, and you're ready to give it a shot. Well, let's dive in! 
















First, we need to buy an audiobook, right? Let's do this. Go in your browser (Safari or iCabMobile - it doesn't matter for the purchasing step)  to www.thebestaudiobooks.com.  Feel free to do a trial run with our FREE selections if you like. We're going to click on The Count of Monte Cristo, Part 1















Click on the "Add to Cart" button
to add the product to your Shopping cart. 





On the right is an image of what the website looks like on a mobile device. Tap on the "Add to Cart" button. This will add 1 copy of the title to your Shopping Cart. 




















Then, tap on the "Check Out" button on the top right of your screen. Pretty simple stuff. 

NOTE: if you are one of our Financial Supporters, and have a $6 coupon code, please wait to enter it until after the next step (Login).

























Next, kindly login to your account. Enter your email address and password. We have several redundant firewalls in place to ensure that everything is very secure. 

If you forgot your password, tap the blue text at the bottom, and we'll send it to you in an email. Super easy. 




Now that you're logged in, we're ready to submit your order. 

Financial Supporters: NOW is the time to enter your coupon code and save $6 off your order. This is a security feature to make sure that the coupon codes don't go rogue. They only work when the system identifies you. 

If everything looks OK, tap SUBMIT ORDER at the bottom of the screen. 













After a few minutes, you will receive an email with your download link. This will give you up to 10 times to access your download page within 120 hours. The time limit is a simple safety feature. If you EVER need to download your product again, or need more time, respond to the email and we'll reset your link. We want to make sure you get what you paid for! 

Now, on a computer, you would click the link and your desktop would open the downloads page in your default browser. But on your mobile device, it's different. Don't tap the link, and open it in Safari. 

Instead, "long tap" on the link in blue. By this I mean to touch the blue text, and keep your finger there until a popup window appears. 







This is what the popup window should look like. Your email app is asking you what you'd like to do with the link. Choose COPY. 

This will copy the link to the clipboard. Now you're ready to download the audiobook, using your NEW browser - iCabMobile. 













So, open up iCabMobile, and clear off the default web page by long tapping the default URL, then tapping the little "x" on the right of the window. This is basic with most all browsers. 

Then, "long tap" in the URL window, and choose "Paste" to paste in your download link. Choose the blue "GO" button at the bottom right of your screen. 

You will be directed to your downloads page. 











Long Tap until a popup window appears,
asking you what you'd like to do with this link.

Now we're cooking with gas! This is what your download page should look like. You have three options of how you'd like to download The Count of Monte Cristo, Part 1 - Audiobook, HD Audiobook, and mp3. 

Audiobook: the entire title as one m4b file. This is bookmarkable and very simple to keep track of. The quality matches the audiobooks you'd purchase from iTunes or Audible, which are 64 kbps. Solid choice. 

HD Audiobook: This option is similar to the Audiobook option, but the quality is 192 kbps. This means a larger file size, and a higher than CD quality product. 

mp3: This option downloads a zipped file of the audiobook, with a separate mp3 file that corresponds to each chapter in the audiobook. It can mean a lot of files to wrangle, and tends to not work well if you are downloading directly onto your device. If you're device has limited space, I'd suggest downloading the mp3 files on your computer, unzipping the files, importing them into iTunes, then only placing the files you'll listen to in a day onto your device. The mp3 files are all 192 kbps. 

















When the popup window appears, choose DOWNLOAD

















The arrow pointing downward is the DOWNLOADS module in the iCabMobile browser. Once the circle is completed, your audiobook has finished downloading. 

Tap the arrow when the download is complete. 
















Once you tap the arrow/DOWNLOADS module, you'll see everything you've downloaded in iCabMobile. 

Tap the title you'd like to listen to, and iCabMobile will pull up several options for you. 

Tap "Open file in another App". 

















A series of App icons will  appear in a new popup window. Scroll to the right until you see "Open in KyBook". 

Tap "Open in KyBook"

KyBook Reader will then open, and display your downloaded audiobook. 






















In KyBook Reader, you will find your book under the DOWNLOADS section. 

Tap the image of the title you have downloaded. 














You did it! Tap the PLAY button (center triangle), and start listening to your new audiobook! 

Now you can:

Set a timer when you'd like it to stop. 

See the number of the current Chapter.

Increase or decrease the speed of the playback. 

Close the program, open it tomorrow, and start right where you left off! 

If your screen goes to sleep, you can still access the controls on the lock screen. 



Well, this was a long tutorial, but now that you're set up, you can download audiobooks from The Classic Tales Website anytime, anywhere, and listen to them instantly. 


Thank you for your support and patience with this workaround. Hopefully this will help even more folks enjoy the treasures found at www.thebestaudiobooks.com. I'm working to get all my titles set up as single file audiobooks. If you run into any trouble, please send me an email at support@thebestaudiobooks.com. I can hook you up with a single audiobook file within 24 hours. And as I mentioned, if you ever need more download time, it's no trouble. Your products NEVER expire. 

Enjoy!


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