E-Reader Users Put Their Devices to Good Use

March 12, 2012

harris-annual-books-read-march2012.jpg29% of US adults who use an e-reader device such as a Kindle, iPad or Nook say they typically read more than 20 books in an average year, while an additional 21% say they read between 11 and 20 books per year, according to Harris Poll results released in March 2012. Overall, roughly three-quarters of e-reader users typically read at least 6 books in a given year, compared to 42% of non-users. And while almost 1 in 5 non-users say they do not read any books in an average year, this figure drops to just 2% among e-reader users.

Book Purchases Also Higher

E-reader users also appear to be avid purchasers of books: 41% say they bought at least 10 books in the past year, including 20% who say they bought more than 20. By comparison, just 17% of non-users say they bought at least 10 books over the past year. Similarly, while only 1 in 10 e-reader users report not having bought any books in the past year, this proportion rises dramatically among non-users, to 36%.

Usage Almost Doubles from 2011

The percentage of US adults who use an e-reader has almost doubled for the second year in a row. 28% of adults say they use an e-reader this year, about 87% more than the 15% who used an e-reader in July 2011. Use is highest among adults aged 18-35 and 36-47 (both at 30%), and lowest among those aged 48-66 (24%).

These figures correspond with recent results from the Pew Internet & American Life Project, which found a huge increase in tablet and e-reader ownership over the 2011 holiday period. According to those survey results, the number of Americans owning a tablet or an e-reader jumped from 18% in December 2011 to 29% in January 2012.

Likelihood to Buy Device Relatively Steady

Meanwhile, Harris survey results indicate that 13% of Americans are likely to purchase an e-reader in the next 6 months, while 77% are unlikely to do so and 10% are unsure. In the previous survey fielded in July 2011, 15% of Americans said they were going to purchase an e-reader in the next 6 months. Looking at the data above on growth in e-reader adoption, it appears that the majority of those held true to their word.

About the Data: The Harris Poll results are based on an online survey of 2,056 adults between February 6 and 13, 2012.

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