Bookmarking audiobooks


Q: I have been using my iPod nano to listen to audiobooks. I have noticed that when I stop at a particular point and listen to something else on my iPod (like a song or podcast) that when I return to my audiobook, it starts at the beginning again. I thought I read in one of the many iPod books that iTunes had a digital bookmark that prevented this from happening. Do you have any suggestions?

Bookmarking audiobooks

– Jennie

A: Yes, there is normally a bookmark within audiobooks that allows you to retain the playback position. This should be automatically present in audiobooks that you purchase from the iTunes Store or, however if you’ve encoded your own audiobooks, you may have to enable this settings yourself.

In older versions of iTunes, it was only possible to enable this setting through a special audiobook conversion process, but the good news is that more recent versions of iTunes now allow you to specify this for any type of track rather than just audiobooks, so you could even set your music or video tracks to remember their playback position.

In order to do this, simply select the track in iTunes, and choose File, Get Info. From the resulting dialog box, choose the “Options” tab, and you should see a checkbox labelled Skip when Shuffling:

Simply place a checkmark in this box and click OK. You can also adjust this setting for multiple tracks by choosing several tracks, and then choosing File, Get Info for the group of tracks.

This will not only tell the iPod to remember the playback position of the last track, but will also synchronize the playback position between iTunes and the iPod, and in fact any other Apple device that you sync with the same iTunes library (such as another iPod, an Apple TV, or an iPhone). So you could start listening to an audiobook on your iPod, stop after a few minutes, and then sync your iPod to iTunes and pick up where you left off on your computer (and vice-versa).



Jesse Hollington

Jesse Hollington was a Senior Editor at iLounge. He's written about Apple technology for nearly a decade and had been covering the industry since the early days of iLounge. In his role at iLounge, he provided daily news coverage, wrote and edited features and reviews, and was responsible for the overall quality of the site's content.