The Kindle Unlimited payout to authors rose in February to $1.41 although the overall KDP Select fund fell for the first time since KU was introduced.
The $1.41 payout rate per borrow for February 2015 saw a $0.03 improvement on January’s $1.38, but the KDP Select fund totalled $8 million, down from the record high of $8.5 million in January. The fund was originally set at $3 million for February but Amazon topped it up with $5 million for a total of $8 million.
The higher payout rate and lower fund point to a slowing down in Kindle Unlimited’s rate of growth.
Each month, I make an estimate of the total number of KU borrows by dividing the total fund by the payout per borrow. For February, this would be 8,000,000/1.41 which results in a total of 5,673,758 for the month — a big fall from 6,159,420 in January (estimated using the same method — 8,500,000/1.38).
January did show a very high rate of growth in borrows, with the six million mark being broken for the first time in a 21% leap of over a million borrows from the previous month of December 2014 when borrows reached 5,069,930.
Kindle Unlimited was launched in July 2014 and the payout for borrows for that partial month of KU was $1.86, but August brought a fall to $1.54, and then to $1.51 in September, before hitting a low point of $1.33 in October.