The CITE, a blog published by the National Association of College Stores, takes a look at the intersection of education and technology, highlighting issues that range from course materials to learning delivery to the student experience. Comments, discussion, feedback, and ideas are welcome.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Readers Still Prefer Printed Books

Digital content continues to lag behind a good, old-fashioned printed book in readers’ preference, according to a new survey from the Pew Research Center. The study found that 65% of Americans said they read a print book over the last 12 months, while just 28% read an e-book and 14% listened to an audiobook.

More than 70% of Americans reported reading a book in the last year, a number that has remained consistent since 2012. Almost 35% said they read an e-book or listened to an audiobook in the last year, but just 6% said they only read digital content.

E-book readership did increase by 11 percentage points between 2011-2014, but numbers have not changed since. The survey, conducted last March, also found that 19% of Americans under the age of 50 have used a cellphone to read a book and just 8% said they used a dedicated e-reader.

“While print remains at the center of the book-reading landscape as a whole, there has been a distinct shift in the e-book landscape over the last five years,” wrote the authors of the report. “Americans increasingly turn to multipurpose devices such as smartphones and tablet computers—rather than dedicated e-readers—when they engage with e-book content. The share of e-book readers on tablets has more than tripled since 2011 and the number of readers on phones has more than doubled over that time, when the share reading on e-book reading devices has not changed.”

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