Why Is Audible Only Playing Samples? (Solved & Explained)

Audible samples are a helpful feature that allows users to get a taste of what a book is like.

In this article, we will cover how to listen to a full audiobook and the best troubleshooting tips to stop Audible from only playing samples.

This is Why Audible is Only Playing a Sample:

Audible samples are free and last 15 minutes; they are designed to help customers decide whether they wish to purchase an audiobook. If a user is logged out, Audible may only play samples. For persistent problems, use another device, sign out and back in, and also re-download the audiobook.

Smart Phone lays on table top with Audible App Library open on screen

How do you get Full Audiobooks to Play on Audible?

Listening to full audiobooks on Audible is incredibly simple, but it’s not the same as listening to just a sample. To begin with, you must have already purchased the title from the Audible catalog, then you will need to download it into your library.

If you have purchased a title and you want to download it, then all you have to do is follow the steps below to listen to a full audiobook.

How to Download an Audiobook from Audible on iOS & Android Devices:

First, ensure your device is connected to the internet and has enough free storage space to download an audiobook.

  1. Start by opening the Audible app and signing in.
  2. Tap on ‘Library’, located at the bottom of your screen.
  3. Next, beneath the ‘All’ tab select ‘All Titles’
  4. Here you will see all of the titles you’ve already purchased. Simply select the arrow on the cover art of the one you want to listen to and the download process will begin.

How to Download an Audiobook from Audible on your Desktop:

  1. Begin by visiting Audible.com and signing in with your Amazon or Audible credentials.
  2. Next, click ‘Library’
  3. Now choose ‘Titles’ and then ‘All’
  4. You will now see a list of your purchased titles. Next, simply click ‘Download’

Once you have downloaded your chosen audiobook, you’re only a few steps away from listening. On the Audible app, simply tap on the cover art of the title in your library in order to play it.

For Desktop, click ‘Listen Now’ to play your Audible audiobook. You can also use the Audible Cloud Player to stream titles online with no need to download the audiobook onto your computer.

Why is Audible Only Playing the First Chapters of my Audiobook?

If you are struggling to listen to the full version of an audiobook on Audible, it can be because of the following reasons:

  • Audible is only playing the sample of your audiobook.
  • You have been signed out of Audible.
  • You have not purchased the title.

Why does Audible Only Show Examples (Samples)?

Audible samples are the first 15 minutes of an audiobook and are available to help customers decide whether they wish to purchase the title or not.

Samples are one of Audible’s great features, but if you can only see samples and you do not have access to full audiobooks then it can be incredibly frustrating.

Below are the top troubleshooting tips to help solve this problem, so take a read and you should be listening to full titles in no time.

You have been Logged Out of Audible

The most common reason why Audible is only displaying samples is that you are no longer logged into Audible.

You can be logged out of Audible for many reasons, for example, there has been an app update or because someone else has logged onto Audible on your device.

To sign back into the Audible app, follow these steps:

  1. Open up Audible on your Android or iOS device.
  2. Select the gear icon to open ‘Settings’
  3. Next, scroll to the bottom and tap on ‘Sign in’
  4. Finish by entering your login credentials and tapping ‘Sign in’ once more.

Once completed, you should find that when you go to your Library, you will be able to listen to the full version of your audiobook, not just the sample. If this fails, then have a look at the next troubleshooting tips below.

Please also read our article about Audible and Login issues if you experience any further problems.

Your Audiobook Download is Corrupted

Sometimes, when you download an audiobook, the file can become corrupted and you will experience playback issues. This is rare but can happen for multiple reasons, one example being an intermittent internet connection during the downloading process.

If you cannot play the full audiobook on Audible then the simplest solution to this is to delete and re-download it.

Here’s how to delete and re-download an audiobook using the Audible app (the process is the same for Android and iOS):

  1. Open the Audible app and ensure you are logged in.
  2. Tap on ‘Library’
  3. Scroll through your purchased titles and find the audiobook you want to delete.
  4. Tap the 3 dots (the overflow button) and select ‘Remove from device’
  5. Your audiobook will now be removed from your device. To re-download it, simply search for it in Audible’s catalog and tap on ‘Download’

Try Using an Alternative Audible-ready Device

It is also possible that the reason Audible is only showing samples is because of the device that you are using to listen and not because of Audible itself.

To see if this is the case, all you have to do is log into your Audible account using a different device. If the issue no longer occurs, then you know that it is isolated to the problem device and not Audible.

It’s also worth trying to listen to your audiobooks through Audible’s Cloud Player to identify where the problem lies.

Why does Audible Keep Playing the Sample?

If you find that Audible keeps playing the sample of your audiobook instead of the full version, it may be worth changing the download quality and settings. Doing so can sometimes resolve playback problems with Audible.

You’ll find that changing the download quality for your Audible titles is the same on both Android and iOS.

Just follow these simple steps:

  1. Open the Audible app.
  2. Select ‘Profile’
  3. Tap on the gear icon in the top right to open up the ‘Settings’ menu.
  4. Scroll down and select the ‘Data & Storage’ page.
  5. Here you can change the download quality from ‘High’ to ‘Standard’ and vice versa.

High-quality downloads naturally take up more storage on your iOS or Android device and could be the reason why Audible is only playing the sample.

Another common solution that appears to work in most cases is to simply log out of Audible and log back in again.

To log out of the Audible app, follow these steps:

  1. With the Audible app open, navigate to your ‘Profile’
  2. Tap the gear icon on the top right-hand side.
  3. Scroll all the way down to the bottom and tap ‘Sign Out’
  4. Now try logging in again, and you may find that your playback problems have been resolved.

Can you Remove All Samples from Audible?

There is no way to simultaneously remove all of your free samples from your Audible library, but it is possible to remove them individually in a few taps.

For some users, the free samples are a great way to preview an audiobook before they commit to purchasing it. Yet, for others, it can feel as if their library is clogged up with unnecessary and unwanted samples for titles that they didn’t purchase.

This is why many users want to keep their library clear of free samples they are not interested in.

If you want to remove the samples from your Audible account, all you have to do is follow these steps:

  1. Open the Audible app on your Android or iOS device.
  2. Navigate to your ‘Library’
  3. Scroll and find the free sample you wish to delete.
  4. Tap the 3 dots next to it, and tap ‘Remove from Device’

If you have other questions about your Audible Library, check out our article about how many books you can have on Audible.


Why is Audible only playing a sample of the audiobook?

How can I troubleshoot playback issues on my device?

How can I download my audiobooks on my Audible for iOS app?


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