Don't Publish Large ePub or Mobi Ebooks

Do you sell ebooks directly on Gumroad or on your website? Don't ship large ePub or Mobi files, they may make it impossible or impractical for readers to load the files in their favorite reading apps.

Here's an example of an ebook I bought on Gumroad and available in PDF, ePub, and Mobi format. I'd like to read it on my Android phone and tablet.

My ePub reading app, Google Play Books, is ubiquitous on Android. It can sideload files up to 100 MB, but the ePub version of that Gumroad book has a size of 105 MB.

I can't use the Kindle Android app via Send to Kindle because the book's Mobi file is 33 MB. Gmail, along with most other email clients, can't send attachments over 25 MB. For larger files, Gmail sends download links that don't work with Amazon's automated Send to Kindle system, which can't click links. Also, Gumroad doesn't provide a Send to Kindle button for the file the author supplied.

This leaves the PDF file. However, it’s a suboptimal option as I can comfortably read it only on the desktop.

Space Apps for Android ebook on Gumroad
My ebook Space Apps for Android on Gumroad on a Lenovo Tab E7 tablet.

My ebook Space Apps for Android, for sale on Gumroad and on Leanpub, it’s at the other end of the file size spectrum.

I use the Lanpub platform and toolchain to format the files in PDF, ePub, and Mobi format. At 116 pages, it’s admittedly easy to keep the files of this text-only work short. The PDF file is 2.8 MB, the ePub file 2.6 MB, and the Mobi file 5.4 MB.

Keep your ePub files under 100 MB and Mobi files under 25 MB. I'm not familiar with Apple Books, but I assume it places similar size restrictions on sideloaded ePub files.

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