Digital Books – How to Open and Transfer to Your Devices

Digital books come in two main formats—ePub files, which are used by most e-reading software,  and Kindle files, which are used by Amazon Kindle devices. If you are not sure which file works for you, you probably need the ePub file. ePubs work on the Apple iPad, Kobo, B+N Nook, Sony Reader, Google Play Books, Readium, Bluefire Reader, the Kobo Reader App, and the Sony Reader App (and many more). Kindle files work on the Kindle, Kindle DX, and Kindle Fire.

Once you purchase a digital book, you will want to read it! How you open the file will depend on what device you have or whether you want to read it on your computer or mobile phone. Here are instructions to help you open the file and get reading. If none of these instructions apply to your situation, send us an email at

Reading Your ePub on an iPad or iPhone

Apple allows you to transfer ebook files to your Apple devices through iTunes. Simply open iTunes and navigate to your iPad or iPhone. Go to File > Add to Library and select the ePub file. Otherwise, you can drag and drop the ePub file into the Books tab of your Library in iTunes. Sync iTunes with your iPad and your book should appear on your shelf in your iBooks app.

If you do not wish to use iTunes to put your book on your iPhone or iPad, you can simply email the file to the email account you have set up on your device, click the file to open it, wait for it to download, and then choose the application you wish to open the book with (iBooks).

You can also use an app like the Google Drive or Dropbox app for iOS to get your file on your device. Just add the ePub file to your Dropbox or Google Drive and then, on your iPad or iPhone, open the Dropbox or Google Drive app, find the file and click to download it. When your device asks you which application to open the file in, choose iBooks.

Reading Your ePub on a Kobo, Sony Reader, or other e-readers

There are many devices that are used just for reading ebooks, like the Kobo or Sony Reader. These are usually called e-ink devices because of the paper-like screen. To get your book on your e-reading device, simply connect it to your computer via USB, and when it loads up your computer should ask you if you want to open and view the files. If not, you can find the device (once it has mounted through USB, sometimes it takes a couple of minutes) in My Computer as a ‘Device with Removable Storage’ or ‘Portable Device’. Double-click to browse the file structure. You should be able to simply drag and drop the ePub file into the main folder when you are browsing the device. If not, you may have to look for a folder where you see other ePub files (the other books already on your device). Once you drag and drop, safely disconnect your e-reader by right-clicking it in My Computer and choosing “Eject”. Then you should see the book in your library on your e-reader.

Reading Your ePub on Your Computer

We recommend Adobe Digital Editions for reading on your computer.  You can download it here.

Once you have installed ADE, you can simple choose to open your file in ADE or drag and drop it into the application while it is open.

If you are reading on a Mac with the Maverics OS X, your computer will already have iBooks installed. This is another great option for reading e-books on your computer. Like above, simply open the file in iBooks or drag and drop it to read on your Mac computer.

Reading Your ePub on Your Android Phone

In order to read an ePub on your Android Smartphone you will have to install an e-reading app like Google Play Books or the Bluefire Reader.

To read your book using Bluefire Reader, download the free app from the Google Play Store onto your phone. You can either choose to sign in to the reader with an Adobe ID, or you can just click “Try the App Now”. Once it is installed, hook up your Android phone to your computer via USB, and when you get a pop up on your computer choose “Open device to view files”. You can also navigate to the device by going to My Computer and finding the name of you phone under Removable or Portable Devices. Navigate to the “Downloads” folder on your Android phone and drag and drop the ePub from your computer to that folder. You can disconnect your phone from your computer now.

On your phone, navigate to the app called File Manager and then find the ePub by going into the Downloads folder. Tap it, and choose to open it in Bluefire Reader. Choose Read Book Now in the Bluefire app.

You can also open the book the same way in the Google Play Books app that comes on some Android phones. Simply choose to open in Google Play Books instead of Bluefire. However, you have to have your Play Books account set up already, and then the book will upload to your Play Books account.

Reading Your Kindle File on Your Kindle Device

Once you have downloaded the Kindle file, you can easily add it to your Kindle device by hooking up that device to your computer via USB, and when it pops up on your computer choose to “Open device to view files”. You can also do this by going to My Computer and finding your Kindle device in Portable Devices or Devices with Removable Storage. Drag and drop the Kindle (.mobi) file into the documents folder of your Kindle’s storage and then safely remove the Kindle from your computer by right clicking on it in My Computer and choosing Eject. The book should now be in your Kindle library.

adminDigital Books – How to Open and Transfer to Your Devices