Seventeen Percent of Germans Read From an eBook At Least Once a Week

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAfter the US and the UK, Germany boasts one of the most developed ebook markets in the world, but as a recent survey reminds us, the printed book still dominates.

Yougov released a survey last week on media consumption in Germany. I’m still looking for the original source, but The Local reports:

Over half of Germans read a book at least once a week, whereas around one in five use movie streaming services and only 17 percent read ebooks.

Still, reading a book still wasn’t Germany’s most beloved pastime, with watching the television still way out ahead of the pack – 89 percent of Germans still sit in front of the telly at least once a week.

In terms of what Germans like to buy for entertainment, the written word came out on top.

Previous surveys have said reported that a quarter of Germans had read on ebook in the past year, and given the different time frames it is hard to say whether the new report indicates an increase or decrease.

But one thing we do know from this survey is that the paper book buyers still outnumber the buyers of ebooks; Yougov reported that 53% of Germans said they’d bought themselves a book, and that 38% had bought a book as a gift,  over the last six months.

That is far larger than the (estimated) 2.9 million Germans who have bought an ebook in the past year, but that should come as no surprise given that we already knew that the print book market far exceeds the ebook market in Germany and everywhere else in the world.

In any case, books are still important to German consumers. Thirteen percent of respondents said books weren’t important to them, while 40% said they could do without streaming services like Spotify and 48% could live without audiobooks.

image by LIS-Corner 2009

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. Joern17 January, 2016

    Hey Nate, here you find the original source by YouGov, a PowerPoint-File:

    1. Nate Hoffelder17 January, 2016


      Yes, I saw your post and was about to add a link with credit.

  2. […] the popularity of that technology. The Digital Reader has news of one such survey, reporting that seventeen percent of Germans read from ebooks. It’s easy to suppose that figures like this will increase as mobile technology because […]

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