A New Ceiling on E-book Adoption
According to a new study from the Pew Research Center, one in five American adults don’t use the Internet at all, and half of those don’t use it because they believe it’s not “relevant” to them.
You don’t have to be a statistician to know that if 20% of Americans don’t use the Internet at all, they’re probably not good prospects to start reading e-books any time soon. Most of those who fall into that group are senior citizens and those living in households earning less than $30,000 a year, said the study.
While the latter group isn’t a very large book-buying group, the former is.
The good news for publishers, I suppose, is that as time passes, more readers as a whole are trying e-books. While this generation of senior citizens may not be friendly to digital technologies, the next may be.
And as for low-income households, it may be worth noting that the Pew study found that about 63% of Americans use either a cell phone, laptop, e-reader or tablet computer to go online. The Pew study also said that mobile Internet access is “changing the story” for “groups that have traditionally been on the other side of the digital divide” — that they are using mobile technology to go online.
So, where is the ceiling for e-book adoption? Right now, it’s about 80%, if Pew is to be believed. We’re not nearly there yet. Roughly a fifth of Americans have tried e-books, according to another recent Pew study, which is among the highest rates of countries around the world, according to a recent Bowker study.
Ceiling image via Shutterstock.