I no longer have an iPhone or iPad, but still have books in my iTunes account that I would like to read. Is there a program for OS X that will allow me to read iBooks without an iOS device?

I am familiar with calibre, but the main issue here is the DRM.

  • No... now. There's speculation that Apple will be responding to Amazon's release of their Kindle reader with an OSX-based iBooks reader at Thursday's education-related event. So you may want to watch the details of whatever news comes out of that.
    – Don
    Jan 18, 2012 at 20:13
  • Sadly, this did not happen.
    – Kyle Hayes
    Jan 20, 2012 at 19:44

4 Answers 4


OS X 10.9 Mavericks includes an iBooks app that allows you to read any documents - including purchased books or your own pdfs - that you had in iBooks for iOS.

Mavericks is a free upgrade available for the following systems, and was released on 22 October, 2013 through the Mac App Store.

From OS X Mavericks : System Requirements

To install Mavericks, you need one of these Macs:

iMac (Mid-2007 or later) MacBook (13-inch Aluminum, Late 2008), (13-inch, Early 2009 or later) MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid-2009 or later), MacBook Pro (15-inch or 17-inch, Mid/Late 2007 or later) MacBook Air (Late 2008 or later) Mac Mini (Early 2009 or later) Mac Pro (Early 2008 or later) Xserve (Early 2009) Your Mac also needs:

OS X Mountain Lion, Lion, or Snow Leopard v10.6.8 already installed 2 GB or more of memory 8 GB or more of available space

  • One thing I like about the new iBooks app is that it has the ability to load my own ePub and pdf formatted work/books/documents, etc. I find that so useful, that I'm contemplating moving from kindle.app. I never thought I would.
    – ICL1901
    Dec 14, 2013 at 22:05

Apple has released an FAQ for iBooks where (as of January 2012), it says under
About iBooks and the iBookstore → What are the requirements to use iBooks?:

You can use iBooks on iPad. You can also use iBooks on iPhone or iPod touch with iOS 4 or later.

Until OS X Mavericks was released with iBooks for OS X, the answer was no.

  • Answer correct at time of writing but answer is now yes with iBooks app in Mavericks
    – Joop
    Dec 13, 2013 at 12:29

At this time Unfortunately, no.

There is no Mac OS X application for iBooks. You may want to submit a feature request to Apple.


If you copy a purchased epub format book out to the Finder, you can load it into calibre, but when you try to read it, the App's embedded reader tells you:

This Book is locked by DRM. To learn more about DRM and why you cannot read or convert this book in calibre, click here.

Apple has not yet provided a method to read these books on a Mac. Despite rumor, Thursday's education-related event produced no OSX-based iBooks reader. So the answer is still no, and will likely remain no for the forseeable future.

  • Calibre will connect with your iTunes library, however iBooks are protected by DRM and not readable outside of the iBooks app.
    – KidPub
    Jan 18, 2012 at 19:07
  • No such announcement was made today at the Apple event, so the answers remains as 'No' for now. Jan 19, 2012 at 17:32

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