Thu, Aug 13, 2020

Whether you are a new digital publisher or a seasoned publishing house, choosing the right format for your eBook is an important decision as it will ultimately dictate the reach and readership. However, certain other factors also come into play like the content of your eBook (only text or text with a lot of images). Many publishers have started providing interactive eBooks for children and adults. These are game-changers as they bring the content to life with an audio-video experience.

Once the basic content is in place, then step in the various ebook conversion platforms which make the basic PDF or .txt file compatible with ebook readers. With a plethora of conversion tools available online, it is easy to get confused between them. Some of these software tools are free to use and some only allow paid subscribers to use their tool.

While a free tool is always preferred by most people, paid software could provide you with additional features and better output. The latest entrants in this field are companies that provide additional services like a book and cover designing, adding interactivity to the content etc. Additionally, paid services also offer the peace of mind of a secure and safe conversion. Here is a list of top ebook conversion platforms that all publishers should definitely consider before jumping on to the ebook bandwagon.

  • Kitaboo

While there are many platforms available in the market, there are a few organisations that offer the ebook conversion process as a SaaS service. Kitaboo is one such leading provider which not only does the conversion but also provides its clients with a well-designed book. The platform itself is capable of converting PDF documents into ePUB3 and Mobi/KF8 eBooks. 
What really sets Kitaboo apart is its ability to create interactive content enriched with a read-aloud feature, external hyperlinks, videos, and audio files. It also consists of HTML5 interactivity and games.
After conversion on Kitaboo, the output eBooks can be made available in Android, iOS and Windows and can be viewed on all major book hardware and software platforms such as Amazon Kindle, Apple iBooks, Google Playbooks, Kobo, Adobe Digital Editions, Readium-based custom eBook readers, ePub.JS-based custom eBook readers. 

  • Online-Convert

This is an online tool which is absolutely free for users. Here you can convert your files into an ebook. What’s really neat is that it supports a variety of common formats like AZW, ePUB, MOBI, PDF, LIT, LRF, PDB, TCR and FB2. This platform is like a one-stop destination for users who wish to convert any audio, video, image and documents as it sports converters for all these file formats. 
For people who wish to convert a smaller batch of files the platform allows you to do up to 20 files with just a click. If, however, you are a large-scale publisher who wishes to batch convert up to 200 files per conversion then the website needs you to sign up and create an account. Being an account holder results in high-speed conversion as account holders are prioritised. 

  • Hamster Soft

Unlike other platforms which offer cloud ebook conversion services right through the browser, Hamster Soft needs to be downloaded in a computer before it can convert. But it makes up for this slight inconvenience by offering a very simple user interface. A user has to simply upload the input files and select the device on which the ebook is meant to be accessed, and then hit the convert button. Voila, you have your ebook.
It is a very versatile platform as it converts your files to TXT, PDF, FB2, LIT, HTMLZ, PDB, LRF, PUB formats. It also allows your eBooks to be accessed on Kindle, iPad, iRiver, Sony, Nook, Kobo and many such devices. 

  • eBook Converter

eBook converter comes with the flexibility of using either its online browser-based interface or downloading the software on a Windows PC or a Mac. This software converts EPUB to PDF, EPUB to MOBI, Kindle to PDF, MOBI to PDF, MOBI to EPUB, AZW to PDF, TXT to EPUB, TXT to MOBI and many more such combinations. A notable exception is that it cannot convert a PDF file into an eBook format, but it does convert eBooks into a PDF. 

  • Zamzar

The user experience of Zamzar is a bit different than most other platforms out there. Firstly, it need not be downloaded into a computer as it operates exclusively online. The second is the mode of delivering the output. Once you have uploaded your file and chosen the output format, Zamzar will convert your eBook and send it to you through an email. 
Zamzar’s free service allows you to only convert 50MB files, whereas for converting larger files an account needs to be created. Signing up for their service also guarantees faster file conversions. 

  • To ePUB

This conversion tool supports over 30 input formats. Simply upload your file and select a target conversion format and within minutes you would find your newly converted eBook ready for distribution on different reading devices. This tool offers a very simple and easy to use interface.

  • PDF Mate

This is probably one of the most versatile tools for ebook conversion. It can be downloaded or purchased with a licence. The scope of services offered between the two versions is not that significant. So you would be advised to first download and experience the free version before purchasing a licenced version. It works on both the Windows and Mac platforms. It supports a total of 24 input formats besides converting PDF to ePUB, TXT, MOBI, DOC, IMG, HTML, SWF formats. 

  • eBook conversion

This is also one of the few paid services available, where the company not only offers eBook conversion services but also formatting and designing. The eBooks can be published on Amazon Kindle, Apple iBooks, Barnes & Noble Nook, Kobo Reader, Android Google Play and others. The total cost of converting an eBook would depend on the kind of services, and the number of services availed.

  • Calibre

Probably the only open-source platform available in the market today is Calibre. It is an e-book library management application developed by users of e-books for users of e-books. It has a variety of features like Library Management, Ebook conversion, Syncing to e-book reader devices, Downloading news from the web and converting it into e-book form, Comprehensive e-book viewer, Content server for online access to your book collection. In fact, it can be rightly called a companion app for your eBook hardware devices.

In summary

As a publisher, you should ideally consider factors like the safety and security of your content. Whether an ebook conversion tool can enhance your content by embedding it with enhanced features and interactive elements. And lastly, if it can help you convert your required volume in a cost-effective and timely manner.

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