Business, Economics and Jobs

E-book sales skyrocket as print declines, new data suggests


E-books and tablet readers are poised to surpass print books which have been steadily declining.


Hannelore Foerster

E-book and tablet sales jumped sharply over the last year with print books in rapid decline.

New data by the Pew Research Center shows that 23 percent of people have read an e-book in the last year compared to 16 percent two years ago.

The Los Angeles Times reported that the data shows that a quarter of American adults now own a tablet like the Apple iPad or the Kindle Fire.

That number is up from 10 percent in 2011.

Those who own an e-book reader like the Kindle rose to 19 percent from 10 percent.

"We are still in the early stages of the transition," said Lee Rainie, director of the Pew Internet Project, according to SlashGear.

More from GlobalPost: Amazon UK: Kindle e-book sales surpass those of print books

"It's a big deal for the publishing industry, in the same way that the transition to digital news was a big deal for the newspaper business in the late '90, and the same way Napster was a big deal to the music industry in the early 2000s."

The research group estimates that traditional e-readers like the Kindle may also soon be overtaken by tablet computers that are becoming better for reading.

Pew found that those most likely to have read an e-book were college-educated, earned a good living and were between the ages 30 and 49, said ZDNet.

The new data was based on a survey of 2,252 Americans over the age of 16.

The research can be found here.