The .epub file extension is a popular file format used to store e-books and other types of content. EPUB, short for electronic publishing, was named the official standard of the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) in September 2007.

What is an EPUB file?

EPUB files can store words, images, style sheets, fonts, metadata information, and content tables. They are considered layout independent, which means screen size does not affect formatting — EPUB files can display content on screens as small as 3.5 inches. This, and the fact that it is a freely available standard, is the reason why most eBooks support EPUB files.

How to open one?

Due to their widespread use, more hardware e-readers support EPUB files than any other e-book file format. You can open an EPUB file whether you’re using Kobo, Barnes & Noble Nook, or even on your desktop using one of the many free programs like Caliber or Stanza Desktop. The notable exception here is the Kindle. You can’t read an EPUB file directly on Kindle, but there are ways to convert it to something Kindle can use.

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iPhone and Android devices come preinstalled with iBooks and Google Play e-book apps. If you’re trying to open it on your desktop, you’ll probably need a third party app.

If you’re using Windows 10, Microsoft Edge may display EPUB files by default. If Edge is not already set as the default program to handle EPUB files, right-click the file, select the «Open With» menu, and select «Microsoft Edge».

Edge will then open a new tab displaying your book in the same format as for the Reader View .

Of course, Edge won’t give you the best reading experience. We still recommend using something like Caliber, which can open any number of ebook formats.

How do I convert one?

Just like any other file format, you need specialized software to convert EPUB to another format. If you try to change the extension, you may end up with a corrupted and unusable file.

Unless you’re using a Kindle, which uses a native file format, your eReader probably already supports EPUB, and all you have to do is open the file on your eReader or smartphone. But you can use the EPUB file on your Kindle; You just have to convert it first.

For this we again recommend Caliber. Not only does it allow you to open and view eBooks, but it also has a powerful tool that can convert your file to one of 16 different formats, including the MOBI format that your Kindle can open.

If you’re not too interested in downloading third-party software, or you only have one or two books to convert and don’t want to worry, some websites can do the conversion for you.

Some free online file conversion sites include DocsPal, Convertio, ConvertFiles, and Zamzar. It all works great, although DocsPal is probably the easiest to use.

Just go to any of these websites, upload your files, choose the format you want to convert to and the website handles the rest! Some require you to provide a valid email address so they can email the file to you after the conversion is complete.

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