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How to read .docs like ebooks?

Discussion in 'Android Apps & Games' started by Fking, May 19, 2010.

  1. Fking

    Fking Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I have quite few books in .doc formats. All the ebook readers for android i found dont really support .doc.
    The most of them dont support anything other than this new for me "epub" format.

    Now i can open the .docs, but would like to read them in a convenient way with the options and extras of an ebook reader software.
    I found something about online converter from .doc to epub, but would like to have my books accessible without pre-converting.

    So is there something ready that i can use?

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  2. lrbaerveldt

    lrbaerveldt Newbie

    Hmm, an app with ebook reading features that opens native doc files . . . nope, sorry, can't think of any. Frankly, I'd be surprised if there were, since doc is such a horrible format for storing ebooks (personal opinion :D). Especially on a smartphone, since doc files can be quite large whereas epubs of the same work take up much less space. (I am assuming you mean Microsoft Word docs.)

    Still, there are some apps that will open doc files; just search "word docs" in the Market, and you'll find several. Docs to Go shows up in a lot of users' lists of apps, but I don't know how well it would function as an ebook reader.

    You could also just load the files into Google Docs, and then read them through the Android browser or Gdocs. However, I imagine that would be a pretty poor ebook reading experience.

    If you really want the bells and whistles of a true ebook reader, you're probably going to have to convert your files to epub. (I haven't even been able to find a good ebook reader for plain text files, and you would think that would be easy!)

    I believe Calibre (a desktop app for creating epubs) will import doc files, plus it has lots of options for customizing your ebook. Sigil is an open-source epub editor, currently in development, and it's looking quite promising as well (sigil - Project Hosting on Google Code). And some good epub readers for Android include Aldiko and FBReader.

    Personally, I would recommend biting the bullet and converting to epub. Most of my ebooks are in either HTML or plain text format, and I'm in the process of converting them to epub, one-at-a-time, as I decide to read it. I've been reading ebooks for a long time, in a lot of different formats, and epub is looking to become THE standard format for ebooks. As such, it is well supported by a large number of apps and devices, and should be relatively "future proof" (or as future proof as any non-plain text format can be). I think it's worth the time to learn more about epubs (as a document format), and the more I'm learning about it, the more I'm liking it.

    Just my $0.02 (USD). ;)

  3. Fking

    Fking Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    thanks for the detailed answer, seems that i'll have to convert them as well :)
  4. OfTheDamned

    OfTheDamned The Friendly Undead

    Bookfm Reader

    The only one I know of that offers anything for .doc files. Although it more or less does what lrbaerveldt is already talking about.
  5. Fking

    Fking Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    yeah seems like an useful app, the only problem is it's in chinese :)
  6. DrScrubs

    DrScrubs Well-Known Member

    Might as well start learning Chinese. They are gonna rule the world soon! :p

    Sorry, that was just a joke. I couldn't help it. Please don't let this become a political or economic debate. Mods can delete this if it is inappropriate.
  7. Drazil

    Drazil Well-Known Member

    I use Calibre to convert all my books, it's great and free. It also grabs book info and covers for you automatically. You might get errors when trying to convert .doc though, at least I do all the time. When I have a .doc file I need to open it in word, then do a save as > rtf, then convert the rtf file.

    Edit: I use Aldiko to read the books. It's the best reader I've come across so far, and keeps your files in the epub format on the sd card. Calibre has a server for the WordPlayer app to synch your books so you might be tempted to use WP, but I found WP not to look as nice as Aldiko. Also none of the converted epub book covers showed in the library of WP. If you have a ton of books (I've got 168 right now) you'll really want to see a bookshelf full of covers instead of blanks. Worst of all, once you import the book into WP, it extracts all the files and sticks them into some randomly generated folder name, and deletes the original epub file.

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