In January of 2014, the Pew Research Center published a report on the reading habits of Americans. The study focused on how often adults (aged 18 and older) read print books, audiobooks, and e-books. Unfortunately for authors and publishers, although more people read books on digital devices over the past decade, the number of people who are not reading any books has tripled in the past three decades (based on Pew and Gallup data). Could the mass extinction of the bibliophile be far behind? Bookshelf presents highlights from the sobering reading study:
Americans who did not read a book within past year: 23% (2014), 18% (2002), 8% (1978).
Number of books read by Americans: 31% (read 1 to 5 books); 17% (read 6 to 10 books); 28% (read 11 or more books). (Stated another way, the typical American read 5 books within the last year)
Americans who read at least one book in past year: 69% read a print book; 28% read an e-book, 14% listened to an audiobook.
Women are more likely than men to have read a book in past year; African Americans are more likely than Hispanics to have read a book.
Readers with higher level of education and income are more likely to read than readers with less education and lower income.
Women are more likely than men to read a print book or e-book.
Americans who read an e-book within past year: 47% (adults 18-29); 42% (adults 30-49); 35% (adults 50-64); 17% (adults 65+)
Format preferences: 52% of readers only read print books; 4% only read e-books; 2 % only listen to audiobooks; 9% read all three formats.
Most popular platform for e-books: 87% (e-reader); 78% (tablet); 31% (computer); 32% (smartphone)
For further reading: pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/01/21/overall-book-readership-stable-but-e-books-becoming-more-popular/