back to article Pollster charts rise and rise of the e-book reader

Nearly a third of adults in the US now read books on a tablet or e-book readers. But rather a lot of those who don't have no plans to do so, suggesting that the e-book market, despite colossal growth over the past two years, may be reaching its limits. These stats come from psephologist Harris Poll, which earlier this year …

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Anonymous Coward

Number of books bought does not = number of books read

Not even on a DRMed eReader, where you still have access to the classics in the public domain. Also, conversely, people buy with the intention of reading but never get around to it.

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Re: Number of books bought does not = number of books read

True, but it matters not.

A book sale is a book sale. Doesn't matter if it sits on a book shelf, digital or real, unread. It has still generated the sales traffic and revenue for the seller and agents. And as such still brings legitimacy to the content driven aspect that will sustain ebook usage even if device uptake does plateau.

Bit of a non point you are making I feel.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Number of books bought does not = number of books read

Maybe I'm being picky - but the thrust of the article is all about reading, while the stats are all about buying.

Anyway, too much focus on buying ignores the other ownership models that will be required to 'bring legitimacy' eg libraries and subscriptions.

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Re: Number of books bought does not = number of books read

Agreed about the library thing and until a standardised e-borrowing system is put in place with buy in from all the e-reader makers it will continue to flounder and be ignored. When surely the strength of the over the air delivery and space saving is what would help take ebooks into the learning environment large scale.

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Thumb Up

Colour

Personally I'm waiting for a good colour one with a size/dpi that lets me read comics

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Re: Colour

ipad3.

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Rob
Bronze badge

Re: Colour

Any Android or iOS pad will do, I read my comics on a Transformer (not the robot seeing as we're talking comics).

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What About People Upgrading Readers?

I know it is still a relatively early analysis to be doing given that the ebook device market has really only just seen significant enough price reductions to make it feasible for early adopters to upgrade with some regularity, but I'd be interested in the stats from the questions asking current ebook device owners if they have upgraded their readers over the years, how many times and if they plan to do so in the future.

If the device market does plateau at the 30% ish predicted here, that 'churn' in the current device ownership are going to be significant in whether or not we see any further innovation in e-readers. I love my Kindle 3g, but know full well given a device with enough improvements and at the right price I would upgrade.

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Re: What About People Upgrading Readers?

Interesting. I have a Kindle (not 3G) and see no reason at all to buy a new one unless this one dies.

Colour? Don't care - text is monochrome.

Better wireless? Wi-Fi is quick enough for semi-regular book downloads.

Battery life? Bloody good, so very happy with it.

Speed? Just fine, thanks.

Storage capacity? You can get a huge number of books into 2GB let alone 4GB, and I'm happy to shift stuff of by USB mass storage if I need to.

Size/Weight? Bit smaller would be nice, but not enough of a reason to upgrade IMHO.

In short, I'm going to wear this one into the ground before buying another.

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Re: What About People Upgrading Readers?

Oh absolutely, agree, agree, agree with you on every point you make in regards to my own Kindle 3G. It is just a simple observation really. Mulling things over so to speak.

I changed my old clunky first generation Sony reader for the Kindle 3G and saw a massive refinement between the devices which has really made me commit to the format even more than I already had, and picking up my girlfriends new Kindle I can already feel yet more refinement between that and the 3G I have.

So whilst it would have to be a big, big leap forward to make me consider changing from my Kindle 3G, I couldn't rule it out.

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The future...

From what I've see with people I know or hear about on forums, Facebook, etc. most of the objections to the idea of e-books comes from people who haven't actually been exposed to the latest e-readers. I personally have converted several people from doubters into e-reader owners by explaining that unlike phones, an e-reader will go over a week on a charge, that e-ink has no flicker, that there are lots of sources for free and inexpensive e-books out there, etc.

While there will of course be some holdouts who refuse to read anything that's not on paper, I predict that as more people actually see an e-reader, (And, in places other than the US, as they slowly get the rights issues sorted out to make it easier to buy e-books.) there will be quite a few more converts.

Also, as more and more kids and young people grow up having always had access to a tablet computer, and having a lot of their textbooks winding up on one, the younger generation *will* wind up doing most of their reading on e-devices.

So personally, I see a big future ahead for e-books and readers and I don't see them plateauing out any time soon.

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Stats.

If they keep increasing at that rate, there'll be two people reading ebooks for every one person on the planet within a decade!!!

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I'm pleasantly surprised that 28% actually read enough to want an e-reader.

I'd guess the various tablets will grab the lion share of the glossy magazine market - especially if they replace most of the text with speech (e.g. record the celeb interviews & make the article just a title + series of photos, play the recording when user selects the title or a subsection for each photo, etc [*] ).

Could expand job market in post-production - need to make those celebs sound coherent.

[*] not patentable cos if I can come up with that idea in 10 secs then its, err, obvious.

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