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eReader Adoption Remained Flat in 2013, and Other Highlights From Pew’s New Report

The Pew Research Center has issued a new report today on tablet and ereader adoption in the US, and the details should come as no surprise.

About the same number of Americans own tablets today as owned them in May 2013, the last time that Pew conducted a survey on the topic. At that time 34% of Americans owned tablets, a negligible difference from the 35% reported today. Also, an earlier report from January showed that 26% of Americans owned ereaders, meaning that the 24% that Pew reported today actually represents a drop.

B921CFE8386B4074ADC9CE58FE6BE856[1]Pew is framing this report as showing a 10 percentage point increase in tablet ownership since last November, but that’s not the whole picture. I choose to include the intermediate figures because it shows us that most of the increase occurred as a result of the Christmas shopping season, and that gives us a better view of what’s actually going on.

Other highlights from the report include:

  •  Asian-Americans were most likely to own a tablet (50%, but this result could be skewed due to a small sample size of n=164)
  •  Women were slightly more likely to own a tablet (36% vs 34%), and much more likely to own an ereader (27% vs 22%)
  • College-educated and upper-middle-class were much more like to own a tablet or ereader than lower economic classes and the less-educated
  • 55% respondents owned a smartphone, with the under-30 crowd more likely to own one than the over-30 age group

You can find more details here.

If you read the report then I would like to draw your attention to smartphones. That gadget is seeing a much higher penetration of the US market than tablets or ereaders but it’s not getting the same hype.

This report is based on a survey conducted in September 2013 as part of the Project Library User Report. A total of 6,224 Americans were polled.

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fjtorres October 18, 2013 um 1:03 pm

The bigger the phones get, the more useful they become for reading.
At 5in they start infringing on the tablet space, too.
Definitely important.

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