E-Reader Ownership Grows to 12% – Report
This study and report by Pew Internet says that e-reader ownership has doubled within the last six months, bringing ownership of e-readers up to 12% of all adults in the US.
My local news actually reported this last week. I don’t know if they got their data from this study or elsewhere, but they also said that ownership of e-reading devices was up to 12% of those surveyed.
What I found especially interesting about that news report was that nobody seemed really shocked by it. For a long time, the idea of reading ebooks was scoffed at, and every time I told anybody what I did for work they would respond with something like, “Oh, hmm. I like to read on paper.” Of course, the person had never actually used an ebook or e-reader, so this is like a little kid saying they don’t like kiwi before they’ve even tried it. Nowadays I still get the same response from some people, but in general ebooks have become mainstream enough that they aren’t being treated with as much prejudice.
This Pew article has some other interesting numbers in their demographics study. E-reader ownership is fairly evenly distributed between age brackets, evenly split between male and female, but the higher you go in income or level of school completed, the more e-readers you get. That’s not surprising since this kind of thing falls under the category of disposable income, but I do find it interesting that people of all ages own e-readers.
They also have information on the amount of people who own e-readers as well as tablets, generally indicating that e-readers are more widely owned than tablets at this point. That is to be expected since tablets are a bit newer and more expensive.
I attribute this growth to the excellent marketing that Amazon does of its Kindle, as well as the popularity of the Nook and Kobo e-readers. Even though I don’t agree with the restrictive nature of the Kindle, Amazon made e-readers a household object, and the rest of the market has grown because of that.