Once thought destined to reach 50% or 80% of all book buying and reading in the U.S., ebooks have stalled out on their way up to higher altitude.
According to a new study from the Book Industry Study Group, for the past year or so, the share of all new ebooks sold — both in units and dollars — has been flat at about 30% and just under 15%, respectively.
At the same time, the percent of book buyers who read ebooks on at least a weekly basis as well as the percent who have bought an ebook have similarly stalled at around 20% and 25%, respectively.
Those who planned on further ebook growth over the past year may be d. However, this doesn’t mean that ebooks won’t continue to grow. The report later shows purchase intent for tablets and e-readers. Consumers still intend to buy many of both, especially the former. As more people have e-reading devices in their hands, there is a likelihood that adoption of ebook reading will continue to increase.
The report offers tempered good news on this front:
As the innovation curve reaches its later stages, an innovation often becomes accepted as a natural component of the industry’s business environment rather than an exception. Considerable evidence suggests that e‑books and other digital content products are now well established product categories that offer consumers a broader range of reading options resulting in an overall increase in reading activity.
The study, the latest version of the Book Industry Study Group’s Consumer Attitudes Toward E-Book Reading, was conducted in August 2013 among 1,048 Americans aged 13 and up.
Related: Learn more about the present and future of ebooks at Digital Book World 2014!