GetAbstract Review 2021: Should You Get This Book Summary App?

Picture this: you can finish a book in minutes and actually understand it. And no, I’m not saying that you should have yourself bitten by a radioactive spider from a library. Spare yourself from spidey bites by reading this getAbstract review.

By the way, getAbstract is a book summary app, but we’ll get to all of that soon. So why should you care about reading lots of books anyway? Well, some billionaires credit their success to reading. Consider it an investment in yourself.

Honestly, if you see yourself as a high performer, you have to commit to learning. There’s no way around it. No one reaches new peaks with old ways of doing things. You have to learn, apply, and reinforce high-performing habits.

But who has the time? 

What getAbstract does is let you learn from as many books as you want without the consequences of spending long hours reading. In this getAbstract review, I’ll share everything you need to know about the app and my personal experience to help you with your decision.

Hold up! What are these consequences, you say?

Dedicating your weekends to books leaves you no room to apply what you learned. And I don’t recommend reading too many entire books on a short span of time because:

REASON #1. Crappy books still exist. Imagine wasting an entire day on a book that just wasn’t worth it. Maybe you can get a refund, but you can’t get back the hours you lost.

REASON #2. Time is money. And you’d want to focus on books that will have the most impact on your goals.

REASON #3. Information overload. Reading is an investment because you gain something from it. But if you stuff yourself with all this information without giving yourself enough time to process them, then you’re just wasting your time.

Now, should you start using it? It’s up to you. But here’s my take on it.

What is getAbstract?

To me, getAbstract is a rush to the executive suite, and it’s also one of the oldest book summary apps. But aside from books, they also have summaries of articles, reports, podcasts, and videos.

Their summaries are more than just a block of text which from experience can put me to sleep faster than a bottle of tequila on Cinco de Mayo. Each summary (or as they call it, abstract) follows this structure they claim is designed to improve your memory retention:

  • Ratings based on these three key factors: applicability, degree of innovation, and style. The maximum score is ten, while the lowest is 1.
  • Recommendation which helps set expectations on the book’s content and quality.
  • Takeaways. In a game of basketball, think of takeaways as the highlights. The takeaways are bulleted, so they’re super easy to read.
  • A full summary. This is the actual summary. And to make the experience better for you, they lifted quotes from the book and put important texts in bold.
  • Author’s biography so you can start your conversations with “I read about this author’s book…” and up your credibility by 110%.
  • Link to the actual book so you can get it if you want.
  • Comments to the summary from other getAbstract users and maybe gain even more insights from the book. 

Since they’ve been around for a little over two decades, they also have one of the largest summary collections that anyone in the corporate world would love. They’re all business and management books. So if you like to impress your colleagues by sounding smart in every conversation, this app lets you do just that with just 10 minutes of your time. 

You can download the app on your phone for free, but you’ll need an active subscription to use it. If you want to give it a try, they offer a three-day trial to access all of the app’s features. 

What can getAbstract do?

Put simply, a lot.

My getAbstract review won’t focus much on how easy it is to use the app. It’s not your first time using a phone or computer, so you won’t get confused even on your first time.

Instead, let’s focus on how you can maximize the app:

Create playlists

Sometimes, I find summaries I want to consume, but I don’t feel like doing it right now. That’s why I found creating playlists to be super convenient.

With the app, you can organize summaries by themes or in any way you want. So when you’re ready, you can just press on the playlist and start listening.

Curate your personal channels

If you dream of being an influencer but don’t like the attention, a personal channel on getAbstract is a fun way to do it.

Who knows? Maybe your colleagues and other users will follow your channel and benefit from your awesome taste. (Or you can not-so-subtly create a “productivity” channel for your employees?)

The channels they already have on the app are organized by topic like Learning and Memory, Working from Home, and Budgeting, but you can name it whatever you want.

Explore the general topics

Even with the Starter plan, the general topics are more business-y than those in Blinkist. They create channels for these topics instead of filtering results by topic when you search, so you can discover more titles.

And for me, this is way better. sometimes, you don’t even know what you want to read. So having it this way can help you narrow down your selection.

For example, I want to read about sales. I can go to the bottom of the Explore tab and select ‘Sales’, then choose from B2B Selling, Bidding and Contracting, Closing, Complex Sale, Hard Selling, Soft Selling, Cold Calling, and Sales Management.

You can just as easily follow the same steps if, say, you’re interested in Economics or Corporate Finance.

Browse through 20,000+ summaries

getAbstract has a huge library of over 20,000 summaries, and they’re always adding at least one a day for you to consume. It’s like a firehose of information!

The only way you can get through the entire list is if you read at least 55 summaries per day. And getting through one takes about 10 minutes, so that’s around 9 hours a day.

Unless you make it your life’s purpose to finish the entire library, I’m pretty sure you’ll always have something fresh to read.

Read or listen in different languages

Unlike Blinkist that’s only available in two languages, this one is available in seven: English, French, Portuguese, Spanish, Chinese, German, and Russian.

Of course, the reason they have this is so you can read in whatever language you’re most comfortable with. But I totally see people learning French, for example, use this to practice.

Types of summaries available

Their summaries are available in two formats:

1 – Text

Their text summaries all follow a specific format, so you always know where each specific part of the summary is. I love the uniformity, especially the placement of the bulleted takeaways.

Because those come first before the actual summary, I can decide in under a minute whether I want to continue reading. If I don’t, I just scroll down to the bottom of the summary to browse the recommendations.

2 – Audio

You can listen to high-quality audio, so you can consume summaries when you’re doing something else. The audio files are usually under eight minutes, and you’d be surprised how many you’ll finish during just your morning run.

Sadly, not all summaries are available in audio format. According to their site, around 50% of their collection are in audio.

getAbstract review: Is it worth your money?

Let’s look at it this way – you’ll be using getAbstract to make more money. Whether you’re learning strategies to earn more for your own business, or you’re improving your managment and performance to fast-track your career. Either way, you need to learn in order to not be left behind.

If you’re a high performer at work who wants to accelerate their personal and career growth, this is a worthy investment.

Even with just your 20-minute commute to and from work, you can digest four summaries per day. Assuming 250 workdays in a year, that comes at 1,000. And if you subscribe to their cheapest plan, that’s just one cent per summary. The cost per summary goes down further if you use the app more.

getAbstract has more than 20,000 summaries right now. Because they’re releasing new ones at a faster rate than you can consume them, it’s virtually impossible to exhaust their entire library.

Is the app good?

For context, I only use apps while I’m gardening, driving, or dropping a deuce. That’s it. So the app has to be really good to make the cut. Here’s what I love most about it:

1 – You can consume content in multiple formats.

getAbstract lets me “read” books in text and audio form, making it super easy for me to use it, no matter what I’m doing. 

So if my eyes get too tired from staring at my screen, I can switch to audio with no issues. 

2 – It’s user-friendly.

In this area, getAbstract doesn’t disappoint.

I never get lost because everything’s just a push of a button away. They designed the app so you can enjoy everything that it has to offer without looking up how-tos on the internet.

This is very important to me because I always multitask when using the app. I don’t want to put too much attention into making something work when I’m already doing something else.

3 – They also analyze their source content.

Because they also give their analysis in the summaries, you deepen your understanding of the topic. From my experience, I’ve found their analyses sharp and insightful.

So yes, the app is good. If you’re cutting back on social media, getAbstract can keep you busy for hours. 

They organize the app into five tabs:

  • Home where you’ll find featured channels, recommendations, latest summaries, and editor’s picks.
  • Explore where you can see the trending channels, popular summaries, and every topic available in your plan.
  • Search where you can type in a keyword or click one of the trending searches.
  • My Library where you have your playlist, the ones you save to read later, the summaries you liked, your reading history, and the titles sent to you, your personal channels, the topics you’re following, and your reading highlights.
  • Profile where you can change settings and see details about the app and your subscription.

Do I recommend it?

Definitely.

I owe my success to my love for learning. Whether we’re talking revenue growth, productivity, management, or whatever – you won’t reach new peaks if you’re not willing to learn something new.

Even non-business topics like history, society, and science will make you a more interesting conversationalist at conferences and business lunches which will help your growth and success. If you want to learn from books instead of just be entertained, this getAbstract review shows how this app is a terrific learning companion.

The wide range of content, channels, and playlists on getAbstract is one of the best around. I love that I can queue up a concept, go for a long drive, and “read” 10 books before I get to my destination.

As I have both getAbstract Pro and Blinkist Premium, I can say that Blinkist is the better option if you’re looking for something cheaper that also covers more fun topics. So it depends on why you want a book summary app.

If you love reading books (not just summaries), you can use this app to discover new titles without committing to a purchase until you’re absolutely sure.

Their most popular books

The most popular books on getAbstract are in personal development. I use the Pro version, but maybe this means a lot of the subscribers are on the Starter plan. Here are some of my favorites from the list:

  • The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. It’s a manual for self-development, a great read for anyone who wants to get better results from their efforts.
  • The Now Habit. If you want to get rid of procrastination to be in charge of your life, you’ll love his take on the psychology behind it.
  • The 4 Lenses of Innovation. Need to squeeze those creative juices and innovate? This book will help you see innovation not as an accident, but as something that you can make happen.

How much does it cost?

This getAbstract review showed you how valuable the app is as an investment. So how big of an investment will you have to make? 

Starter Plan ($99/year or free for students)

getAbstract advertises this for personal development like life advice, society, and history, so you won’t find as many titles that can help you professionally. It also has 5,000 summaries which can be a lot or not enough, depending on how quickly you go through them.

I highly recommend this if you’re not expecting to get much that can help you with your professional development. They also lock in some features for Pro users like curating your favorites in personal channels, but who doesn’t like a little adventure?

Pro Plan ($299/year or $99/year for students)

Here, you get the whole shebang. This includes their entire 20,000+ summary library and all features locked in the Starter plan.

Yes, this is way pricier than the first plan, but I think of it this way: it’s only $25/month… not even a dollar per day! This is what I have, and it’s worth it because I can:

  • Use the app even with no internet access.
  • Save my favorites and create my personalized channel.
  • Download my favorite summaries to show someone who doesn’t have a subscription plan.

Even from a purely financial perspective, this is a great buy. For example, it’s so impractical to purchase extra mobile data just for this app. So instead of streaming the summaries, I download them in advance at home so I have a full list when I go out.

If you’re a student…

You can have a paid subscription for free or at a huge discount by providing:

  • proof of enrollment for the current semester,
  • or a copy of your student ID.

After they verify your information (which takes a minute AT MOST), you’ll get an account valid for two years. Journalists get everything for free if they go through a similar process.

For everyone else, there’s a three-day trial period.  After that ends, you can choose the plan to continue using the service.

Enterprise Plan

If you run a company, they also have an Enterprise plan which is basically designed specifically for your company. Here, you’ll get everything in the Pro plan plus features like company portal and channels.

But you’ll need to get in touch with them to know how much it will cost if you’re interested.

getAbstract review – FAQ:

Is getAbstract worth the money?

GetAbstract is absolutely worth the money. Its 20,000+ collection is centered around business growth and management strategies that will increase performance and revenue. The app is designed for leaders and high performers who want to learn and test new concepts without spending hours reading about them.

Is getAbstract free?

If you’re a journalist, yes. Students also get the Starter plan for free. Otherwise, you can get a three-day Pro access before committing to getAbstract. 


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