Google Play Books v4 hints at audiobooks with casting, Android auto support and more


Google Play Books v4 just hit the Play Store, while the update didn’t bring many changes, it hints at the launch of audiobooks with Android auto, casting support and more. In fact, few users have spotted the banner of audiobooks on Play Store with 50% off on first audiobook offer listed. 

Google Play Books audiobooks

A teardown has revealed a host of new features that are likely to be added in the upcoming versions. The official changelog to the V4 is a tap on the center and current page marker. Tapping on the center of the page brings up the controls, the update also relocated the page numbers which are no longer present on the right side. The new update also adds page marker which shows the book name and the current reading page. 

Now coming to the features that were revealed in the teardown, it prepares the launch of audiobooks. A closer look at the V4 code reveals the strings relating to the audiobooks, playback, casting, and more. Once the audiobooks switch is enabled, ebooks and the audiobooks will be placed in separate menu making it clutter free.

Just like the regular books, audiobooks will also have samples and will notify once you reach the end. It also reveals that Google will be highlighting that the Play Books will use real chapter titles for the audiobooks instead of a series of meaningless track numbers. All the standard playback controls like play, pause, fast forward, and rewind will be available.

Play Books will also get support for Playback speed which is set at 1x by default, but you’ll be able to adjust it to fit your preference. Even if you come out of the app or your phone suddenly turns off, the Play Books will keep track of your current position and will also sync with other phones so you can continue from where you left. Like you would expect, audiobooks will also support casting so that you can send books to TV, speaker, television, or headphones. 

Google Play Books Android Auto

One significant addition will be the support for Android auto, the V4 brings support for Android auto, and you can plug in your phone to access Play Books. But unfortunately, the V4 doesn’t entirely add support; it will only be enabled once Google brings audiobooks update. Other changes include Miscellaneous notifications channel. You can download the PlayBook v4 from Playstore or manually download and sideload the APK.

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