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ISBN 10 vs. ISBN 13: Know the Difference

Shumaila Saeed
By Shumaila Saeed || Published on February 12, 2024
ISBN 10 is a 10-digit book identifier used until 2007, while ISBN 13 is the current 13-digit standard that includes a prefix to signify book industry.
ISBN 10 vs. ISBN 13

Key Differences

ISBN 10, introduced in the 1970s, is a 10-digit number uniquely identifying books until 2007. ISBN 13, implemented in 2007, expanded this format to 13 digits, including a prefix that reflects the book industry standards.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024
Each ISBN 10 is unique to a specific book, publisher, and edition, facilitating book identification. ISBN 13, while serving a similar purpose, includes a 3-digit prefix, typically '978' or '979', indicating the book publishing sector.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024
ISBN 10 includes a check digit calculated using a specific mathematical formula to validate the number. In contrast, ISBN 13's check digit is calculated using a different formula, reflecting its longer length and different structure.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024
ISBN 10 was primarily used in English-speaking countries and had limited capacity for new numbers. ISBN 13, being longer, offers a greater range of numbers, accommodating the global expansion of the book industry.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024
Converting an ISBN 10 to ISBN 13 involves prefixing '978' and recalculating the check digit. This ensures compatibility between the systems and a smooth transition for publishers and distributors.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024
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Comparison Chart

Length

10 digits
13 digits
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Feb 12, 2024

Prefix

No prefix
Includes a 3-digit prefix ('978' or '979')
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Feb 12, 2024

Check Digit Formula

Based on a 10-digit calculation
Based on a 13-digit calculation
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Feb 12, 2024

Usage Period

Used until 2007
Introduced in 2007, currently in use
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Geographical Reach

Limited, mostly English-speaking countries
Global, accommodates more publishers
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024
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ISBN 10 and ISBN 13 Definitions

ISBN 10

ISBN 10 is a 10-digit unique identifier for books published before 2007.
The book 1984 has an ISBN 10 that ends in 'X'.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 17, 2024

ISBN 13

ISBN 13 includes a prefix, usually '978' or '979', indicative of the book industry.
The ISBN 13 for the latest novel begins with '978'.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 17, 2024

ISBN 10

ISBN 10 aids libraries in tracking and organizing their book collections.
Her thesis referenced books with ISBN 10 numbers.
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 17, 2024

ISBN 13

ISBN 13's check digit is calculated differently from that of ISBN 10.
The check digit in an ISBN 13 ensures the number’s validity.
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 17, 2024

ISBN 10

ISBN 10 was replaced due to the need for more identifiers.
Many classic books have both an ISBN 10 and an ISBN 13.
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 17, 2024
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ISBN 13

ISBN 13 is essential for online book sales and inventory systems.
Online retailers require ISBN 13 for listing books.
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 17, 2024

ISBN 10

ISBN 10 includes a specific check digit for error detection.
The last digit of the ISBN 10 is its check digit.
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 17, 2024

ISBN 13

ISBN 13 is the current 13-digit standard for book identification.
New books are identified using an ISBN 13.
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Shumaila Saeed
Jan 17, 2024

ISBN 10

ISBN 10 is used for cataloging and inventory management in bookstores.
We found the old edition by its ISBN 10.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 17, 2024

ISBN 13

ISBN 13 is compatible globally, accommodating a wider range of publishers.
International editions are easily tracked with ISBN 13.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Jan 17, 2024

Repeatedly Asked Queries

Can ISBN 10 and ISBN 13 refer to the same book?

Yes, but they have different formats and check digits.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

What does ISBN 10 stand for?

International Standard Book Number with 10 digits.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

How do you convert ISBN 10 to ISBN 13?

Prefix '978' to ISBN 10 and recalculate the check digit.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

What does ISBN 13 stand for?

International Standard Book Number with 13 digits.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Why was ISBN 13 introduced?

To expand the numbering capacity and standardize international book identification.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Are ISBN 13 numbers unique to each book?

Yes, each ISBN 13 is unique to a specific edition and format of a book.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

What's the main difference in the check digit calculation between ISBN 10 and 13?

ISBN 10 uses a modulus 11 system, while ISBN 13 uses a modulus 10 system.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Does every edition and format of a book need a different ISBN?

Yes, different formats and editions each require a unique ISBN.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Is ISBN 10 still used?

It's largely phased out but still recognized for older publications.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Can two different books have the same ISBN 10 or ISBN 13?

No, each ISBN is unique to a specific book and edition.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Do eBooks require an ISBN?

Yes, eBooks usually have an ISBN, often distinct from their print counterparts.
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Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Are ISBN numbers required for publishing a book?

While not legally required, they are essential for distribution and sales.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Can an ISBN 10 or ISBN 13 be reused for another book?

No, each ISBN is permanently assigned to one book.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Is it possible to identify the country of publication from an ISBN?

Yes, the group identifier in the ISBN provides this information.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

How can one obtain an ISBN 13 for a book?

Through national ISBN agencies or publishing service providers.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Can an ISBN be used to determine the book’s content or genre?

No, it's purely an identification number and does not encode content or genre information.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Do all books have an ISBN 13?

Most new books have an ISBN 13, but very old editions might only have an ISBN 10.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Is the ISBN 13 prefix always '978' or '979'?

Yes, these are the only prefixes used currently.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

How important is the ISBN for libraries?

It's crucial for cataloging, inventory management, and retrieval of books.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

Are ISBNs used for journals and periodicals?

No, periodicals use an ISSN (International Standard Serial Number).
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 12, 2024

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About Author
Shumaila Saeed
Written by
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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