iBooks: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about iBooks and the iBooks Store

Learn more about iBooks and the iBooks Store.

About iBooks and the iBooks Store

Where can I find the iBooks app?

You can download the iBooks app for free from the App Store on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.*

Is iBooks available in every country with an App Store?

Yes, iBooks and the iBooks Store are available in all App Store countries. iBooks Store content varies by country.

What are the requirements to use iBooks?

  • You can use iBooks on iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch with iOS 4 or later.
  • Support for books with iCloud requires iOS 6 or later and compatible devices.
  • iBooks supports the ePub file format and PDFs. Some PDF documents may not be compatible with iBooks.
  • Adding books and PDFs from outside the iBooks Store to iBooks requires that they are DRM-free and synced using iTunes 10.5.3 or later.
  • Syncing books made with iBooks Author requires iTunes 10.5.3 or later. You can only use iBooks on iPad to read books created with iBooks Author.
  • All books created with iBooks Author require iOS 5 or later. iBooks Author 2.0 requires iOS 5.1 or later.
  • The iBooks Store is available in many countries. The selection of books in the iBooks Store may vary by country.
  • Downloading from the iBooks Store or using iCloud features require an Apple ID and Internet access.

How do I access the iBooks Store?

An Internet connection is required. On iOS devices, iBooks includes the iBooks Store. Tap the iBooks icon and your bookshelf appears. In the upper corner, tap the Store button and the bookshelf flips around to reveal the iBooks Store. From the iBooks Store, you can browse books by title, author, or genre. You can also view featured books as well as books available on the New York Times bestseller lists (United States only). Tap on a book to see more details and download a free sample. When you buy a book, it will automatically appear on your iBooks bookshelf.

Managing your books and iBooks Store content

Are book samples from the iBooks Store downloaded to my iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch?

Yes, when you tap Get Sample for a book in the iBooks Store, iBooks will download an excerpt from the book to your bookshelf. You can read this sample and either purchase or download the complete book from the last page of the sample. Once you acquire the full book, the sample will be replaced in your bookshelf with the complete book.

How large are typical books from the iBooks Store?

The typical book is about 2 MB. Books that contain enhanced features such as audio or video will vary in size depending on the content. Enhanced books may take longer to download or require a Wi-Fi connection to purchase. The iBooks Store offers textbooks that may be as large as 1 to 2 GB in file size and require a Wi-Fi connection if downloading from an iOS device. Download times for textbooks will vary depending on your internet connection.

What digital book file types does iBooks recognize?

iBooks supports the industry-leading ePub digital book file type. You can sync freely available ePub files to iBooks using iTunes, or purchase or download books from the iBooks Store. iBooks also supports PDFs, which can be manually synced to iBooks. In addition to ePub and PDFs, iBooks 2.0 and later also provides support for the new iBooks format used in iBooks Author. Other digital book file types are not supported at this time.

Can I purchase a book from my computer?

In certain countries you can browse and purchase books from the iTunes Store on your computer. Learn more about purchasing books.

Can I copy my books to other computers or devices?

With Automatic Downloads enabled, you can automatically download new purchases to your other computers or devices. Learn more about Automatic Downloads.

Can I download books from other websites?

Yes, you can download ePub and PDF files on your Mac or PC. Add them to your iTunes library by choosing File > Add to Library, or drag the ePub or PDF file to the Books library on your computer. To read these books, simply sync them to your device in the supported formats.

Can I back up the books I purchased?

Yes, any books you've downloaded from the iBooks Store will be automatically added to your iTunes library the next time you sync your device with your computer. To do this, your computer must be authorized with the same account that was used to download the books from the iBooks Store.

How can I determine which books are copy-protected (DRM) versus those that are DRM-free?

iTunes on your computer can show you the kind of book you have by selecting the book and then choosing File > Get Info. If the Kind is marked as Book, this is a book you downloaded from the Internet. If it is listed as Purchased Book, it is a DRM-free book downloaded from the iBooks Store. If it is listed as Protected Book, it is a copy-protected book from the iBooks Store.

Can I download my previously purchased book again at no additional cost?

Yes, you may download past purchases from the iBooks Store at no additional cost. To download a book again, tap Store, then tap Purchased. Find the book you want to download again and tap the download button. You must be logged in to the iBooks Store on your iOS device or iTunes Store on your computer using the Apple ID you originally used to purchase a book in order to download it again. Learn more about downloading past book purchases directly to your computer. Previous purchases may be unavailable if they are no longer on the iBooks Store. Downloading previous purchases is not compatible with iPhone 4 (CDMA Model).

Can I gift a book?

Yes, you can gift books. Learn more about gifting books.

Is there a limit to the number of books I can have?

The number of books you can have in iBooks will vary depending on the amount of space available on your device. iBooks does not limit the number of books allowed on your bookshelf.

Learn more

Learn more about iBooks features.

Note: Some features of iBooks are not available in some iTunes Store (App Store) countries.

* Requires iPhone and iPod touch with iOS 4 or later. iBooks is not compatible with original iPhone or iPod touch (1st generation).

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Last Modified: Jul 24, 2014
  • Last Modified: Jul 24, 2014
  • Article: HT4059
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