Audible has teamed up with Dolby Laboratories to introduce spatial sound into their library. Called Dolby Atmos on Audible, it will be introduced in more than 40 titles, including The Little Mermaid, The Sandman Act III and the music-focused podcast, Maejor Frequency. The move marks another push into narrative audio content for Dolby, as Wondery (also owned by Amazon) began offering Atmos podcasts last year.
The new collection covers multiple genres, including long productions with multiple actors, soundscapes, live performances and podcasts. “The Dolby Atmos collection celebrates and expands the possibilities of audio storytelling by highlighting the extraordinary talents of various actors, writers, directors, sound designers and other creators,” the companies said in a press release.
Dolby Atmos may seem excessive for audiobooks, but like movies, it has the potential to make narrative stories more immersive on good headphones or sound systems. “Through the ability to create more layers of sound and control the direction of different audio elements, creators can draw listeners into a deeper, richer and more realistic spatial sound experience that fully immerses them in any story,” they wrote. The examples of originals the companies highlight in the announcement are more dramatic productions than straight readings, so you probably won’t get spatial sound for every Malcolm Gladwell novel.
For example, The Little Mermaid will feature a “magical underwater soundscape and original music,” presumably enhanced by spatial sound. “Sound placement can now be used as a new element to bring listeners even closer to their favorite podcasts, audio stories and narratives with Dolby Atmos,” said John Couling, vice president of Dolby.
Dolby Atmos titles are available to Audible members through the Audible app on compatible iOS and Android devices with Dolby Atmos. To see all available titles, type “Dolby Atmos” into the search bar on the Audible website or search for the Dolby Atmos logo in the Audible app.