What is an EPUB file?
EPUB means “Electronic Publication”. It is the most generally accepted form of publishing digital eBook files format on the internet today. The (.epub) file extension is the most popular format, similar to pdf, doc, or Mobi.
There are different versions of EPUB, and the International Digital Publishing Forum maintains it (IDPF with version 3.0 currently the latest and endorsed by the Book Industry Study Group (BISG).
Features of an EPUB file
Here are some important features of the EPUB file package:
- It supports full XHTML packaging.
- Multimedia and images could be overlaid on top of it easily.
- Support extensive CSS stylesheet and font usage.
- Text-to-speech is enabled.
- Full global language support.
Where can you find EPUB files?
Here are some online places where you can find Epub files:
Kobo books: It supports the purchasing and downloading of online eBooks that you can read directly on your kobo devices or transfer to your computer. Their book collections span multiple genres, For example, fiction, business, pros, etc.
PDFdrive.com: It is free and open to all. Books there are mostly in PDF but can be converted to EPUB before you download. Though the site has many annoying ads.
Gutenberg: Similar to an open library, books found here are archived and free for use with non-commercial intent. You can easily find books from the 1980s down to the 2000s or more. Some of them have no copyrights restriction. However, you still need to research if you intend to use it for a commercial reason beyond just reading.
Software to read EPUB on Windows and Mac
Here are numerous software on the internet today to open epub files:
Icecream EPUB Reader is one of the best EPUB readers for reading EPUB on Windows 10.
Features of Ice cream Reader:
- Creating Digital library
- Text-to-speech possibility
- Search in books
- Dark mode
- Customizable layout
- Adding internal notes
- Full-screen mode
- Text copying and editing
How can you install an Ice-cream EPUB reader on Windows?
To install an Ice-cream reader on your window computer, ensure you follow this step-by-step process guide:
Step 2) Save it and let the downloading reach completion.
Step 3) Open it and follow the installer instructions, wizard.
Step 4) Once completely installed, go to your computer file manager, select the book you want to open, right-click on it and, select “open with”, choose Ice cream epub reader.
Note: you can also open epub files through the Ice cream epub reader by navigating to the file option on the app, opening the file, navigating and selecting your desired book, and double-clicking to open.
Calibre is a free open-source EPUB reader and an excellent alternative recommendation for Windows and Mac users. Apart from its multiple eBooks format support, another great thing about the software is its extensive and outstanding packed features.
Features of Calibre:
- Built-in editor.
- Bookmarks and notes.
- Advanced built-in search features.
- Sorting eBooks by categories, e.g., by author.
How to install Calibre on your Windows and Mac.
You can install Calibre on your Windows 10 and Mac by following this process guideline:
Step 1) open your browser, visit the Calibre official website
Step 2) Click the window icon (for Windows) or mac OS ( for Mac) and hit download.
Step 3) save the file to your local computer.
Step 4) Go to the download section on your computer, search for Calibre that you just downloaded, double-click, and run it.
Step 5) follow the default installation wizard.
Step 6) Once completely installed, search “Calibre” on your device software library, double-click, and run it.
Adobe Digital Edition is one of the free tools from Adobe that allows you to open and read epub on your devices too. It supports Windows 10/11, Mac OS, Android, and iPhone. It is built for lightweight reading and provides robust customization options.
Features of Adobe Digital Edition:
- Synchronized account for multiple device usage.
- Support most books libraries for direct eBooks download and borrowing.
- Accessible in multiple languages.
- Free for all devices.
How to install Adobe Digital Edition for your Windows 10 and Mac?
Step 1) Visit the official website of Adobe Digital Edition.
Step 2) Select the “Download” option and choose your device’s operating system.
Step 3) Wait for it to download on your local computer, and follow the on-screen instructions to install the software.
4) Epubor reader
Epubor reader is another great epub reading software for Windows and Mac users. It is compatible with every file format, either EPUB, PDF, MOBI, TEXT, or plain HTML.
Features of Epubor Reader:
- Text highlighting
- Different front-changing options
- Toggling between horizontal and vertical reading mode
- Multiple library options
How to install Epubor Reader on window and Mac
Here is a step-by-step guide to installing Epubor reader on Windows and Mac:
Step 1) Visit the Epubor website.
Step 2) Choose your computer OS option and download the free trial.
Step 3) Follow the on-screen instructions to install the software.
Using Browser Extensions to Read EPUB Files
You can also read epub on windows and mac using your browser as well. Microsoft Edge browser for Windows 11/10 is a great alternative for reading epub books. Other browsers like Chrome, Opera, and Firefox require an extra plugin to attain those functions.
Here are plug-ins for reading EPUB on chrome:
Readium plugin is a project of the open web team, a group of programmers making software open and free for users. You can get the Readium plugin directly from the developer’s website or download it from the chrome web store.
How to install Readium plugins on chrome browsers
Follow this process to successfully install the Readium plugin into your chrome browser.
Step 1) Open your chrome browser, get this link and install the plugin
Step 2) Go back to a new window on your browser. The Readium plugin should appear to the right of your address bar.
Step 3) Click on it to open, navigate to the “Add library”, select the book you want to open from your computer, hit enter and wait for it to import to your browser.
Step 4) Double-click on the eBook image, and here you have your book.
EPUBpress is a chrome plugin that allows you to read epub on your chrome and turn your webpage into eBooks. It also makes that content available for offline reading without having to visit the original website.
EPUBReaderis a lightweight epub reader extension supporting multiple browsers. It allows you to read offline and comes with a “read aloud” feature for listening to your favorite eBooks while you’re busy.
Convert EPUB to PDF or MOBI to Read it
Another alternative way to open epub files on your Android, Windows, or Mac is by converting those files to other file extensions
There are numerous free tools and websites that allow you to convert epub files to other files, depending on your preference. Some are paid tools, while others are free to use, below is a list of great ones:
How to Convert epub to PDF or MOBI
Follow these steps to convert epub files to MOBI for Kindle or PDF files using Cloudconvert:
Step 1) Go to Cloudconvert.com. In the convert section, select EPUB, and right at the top section, select MOBI (for converting epub files to .mobi) or PDF (for PDF conversion).
Step 2) Proceed to click on the “select file option”. Go to the file you wish to convert on your computer.
Step 3) Select it and click OK. When the file has successfully been converted, click “Download” to download it back to your device.
How to read EPUB on Kindle, fire tablet, kobo device
Kindle users will need to convert the epub to .mobi file format before using it on their devices. This can be done using the same conversion procedure stated above.
Kindle users needto connect their Kindle to their computers.
Step 1) Click on the kindle name from your computer and open it. Drag the downloaded file into your kindle device. Alternatively, you can copy and paste it there.
Step 2) Eject your device and open it from your Kindle.
You can also convert EPUB to PDF, MOBI, Txt (plain text with no picture), or doc (only used as the last alternative)
Why should I use EPUB instead of PDF and MOBI for reading eBooks?
EPUB, like other file formats, has its advantages, and below are a few reasons you should read your eBooks in EPUB format.
- Universality: EPUB is the most acceptable and most popular file format for publishing eBooks and other types of digital content.
- Reflowable and Fixed-layout: Chief among EPUB’s advantages lies in its reflowable fashion. It means you can conveniently read your book using your small 3-inch screen phone or your computer without aesthetic or image distortion. Everything flows with the screen, whatever its size, with no extra zooming required.
- Multiple platforms support: Many platforms support EPUB more than any other format, making it the chief reason publishers prefer their books published in epub format rather than any other format.