Google Play Books update 3.1.17 is slowly rolling out, and I'm glad to report that it finally brings a feature a lot of you have been dying to see - book uploading directly from your devices. As always, we have the APK which you can install if you don't see the update just yet right below.

What's New

As I already mentioned, you no longer need to go to Google's website to upload your own books - 3.1.17 allows you to upload PDFs and EPUBs directly. Just open a book in any file manager or from an email, and you'll see a new option to "Upload to Play Books." From there, it's all smooth sailing.

The update also promises quicker and smoother opening of books, which may or may not be a tangible improvement. One of my books opened pretty fast, but another I tried was taking a while, spinning and spinning just like it used to. Play Books now also shows you the relevant cover while you wait for the book to open, which may trick you into thinking it's actually loading faster. Placebo or not? You be the judge.

The Notes UI has gotten some much-needed attention - you can now set note colors and delete them more conveniently.

Further improvements, which aren't as discussion-worthy, are listed below.

What's New

  • Books open more quickly and smoothly.
  • Upload EPUB or PDF files to your library from your phone or tablet. From email or Downloads, touch the file to open it and choose Upload to Play Books.
  • Improved look and feel of highlights and notes.
  • Lower brightness settings, for better reading in low light.
  • Read any book in landscape view.
  • Dismiss recommended books in Read Now.
  • Additional improvements in performance, stability and accessibility.

Screenshot_2013-12-10-17-20-19 Screenshot_2013-12-10-17-20-28 Screenshot_2013-12-10-17-20-53

Screenshot_2013-12-10-17-36-34 Screenshot_2013-12-10-17-36-13

Left: old simple Note UI; right: new, much better Note UI

Download

The APK is signed by Google and upgrades your existing app. The cryptographic signature guarantees that the file is safe to install and was not tampered with in any way. Rather than wait for Google to push this download to your devices, which can take days, download and install it just like any other APK.

File name: com.google.android.apps.books-3.1.17.apk.

Version: 3.1.17 (Android 3.0+).

MD5: b7b9d843d5e339a6da4bf8299685a1cd.

Thanks, +Tj Hafer!