e-readers have come a long way since Amazon decided to breathe a new life into this market a few years ago. Sony and a few other companies have been in this business for quite a while. But they failed to make e-readers go mainstream. It did take Amazon a few months to get people talking about Kindle. Fast forward to now, and people are more open to the idea of buying a dedicated device for their reading needs. According to a survey by Harris Interactive, 8% of Americans own an e-book reader already and 12% are likely to purchase one in the next few months.
This survey data suggests that people who own e-book readers read more often. 21% of people who do not own an e-reader have not bought a book in the past year as opposed to 8% of those who own one.
First, those who have eReaders do, in fact, read more. Overall, two in five Americans (40%) read 11 or more books a year with one in five reading 21 or more books in a year (19%). But among those who have an eReader, over one-third read 11-20 books a year (36%) and over one-quarter read 21 or more books in an average year (26%).
It is encouraging to see people reading more on their e-readers (and to know that Steve Jobs was wrong on people not reading anymore). At the same time, one can’t discount the effect that video and multimedia content have had on people’s reading habits. Jeff Bezos may not be interested in bringing a color-screen Kindle to the market at this point but don’t expect that to be the case in a couple of year’s time.
Should Amazon add color e-paper and full video support to Kindle 4?