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The Three Best eBook Formats

EditionGuard

February 2, 2021

As an author or publisher, you will need to decide the best ebook formats to use. Your ebook format will determine how readers are able to access the ebooks. While there are many formats to choose from, we’ll explore the benefits of the three best ebook formats.

What Are the Three Best eBook Formats?

Determining which ebook format to choose will depend quite a bit on the purpose of your publication. For almost every purpose, however, there are three formats which are considered the best choices: PDF, mobi, and EPUB. How do you choose which one to use?

Why Choose PDF as Your eBook Format?

Authors and publishers choose PDF because it is common, there are a wide variety of reading apps that work for it. PDF also allows for easy insertion of pictures and charts. PDFs are often used by academic institutions because of the proliferation of readers that make it easy for students to access the files. PDFs are also useful for preserving the original appearance of the material, including rare fonts.

Pros:

  • Can retain the look of the original
  • Can be used with nearly any device

Cons:

  • Large memory
  • Sometimes it loads slowly

Why MOBI Is a Good eBook Format 

Another popular ebook format is MOBI, but it is proprietary to Amazon. MOBI was developed separately from Amazon, but as the format for Kindle, it has grown quite popular. But MOBI can be used on any reader, with the exception of Nook. eBook files can be converted to MOBI from EPUB, PDF, or TXT but these are not the same files as the ones used on Kindle.

Pros:

  • Works with multiple ereaders
  • Improved typography

Cons:

  • Technical glitches can prevent the cover from loading properly

Of the Three Best eBook Formats, EPUB Has Advantages

EPUB has been the official International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) since 2007. You can be read on virtually any device, including mobile phones. Nearly every ebook fulfillment service except kindle supports EPUB. To read an EPUB on Kindle, you must first convert it to a PDF. EPUB allows authors and publishers the flexibility to include unique fonts and typography, charts, formulas, and many other elements. You can also convert PDF to EPUB. It also supports audio and video elements in its latest incarnation. It’s why EditionGuard believes that of the three best ebook formats, EPUB is the ultimate choice for most publishers.

Pros:

  • Standard format
  • Text reflows allowed
  • Versatile
  • Can include in-depth meta data

Cons:

  • Will not work on Kindle

Each of these three ebook formats are useful and offer functionality you may need or want in your next project. Ultimately you should choose a format that gives your readers the best experience.

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