“We’ve seen readers drift away from the use of dedicated e-readers for e-book consumption to their smartphones – and that is a key point.”
Over the decade since the debut of the Kindle from Amazon ushered in the e-book era, the industry’s largest publishers have favored paper over digital formats. The business reasons are many and complex, but in a media world going virtual at breakneck speed, the physical book has held its ground.
At this week’s Making Information Pay event from the Book Industry Study Group, David Walter, executive director for client solutions for NPD BookScan, reported that for the first time in five years, hardcover print book sales overtook e-book sales, at least in terms of traditional publishers.
Accounting for that shift, Walter cited a general rise in e-book prices, to about $9 on average for a trade title, notes Andrew Albanese, Publishers Weekly senior writer.
“We’ve also seen readers drift away from the use of dedicated e-readers for e-book consumption to their smartphones – and that is a key point,” Albanese tells CCC’s Chris Kenneally. “Remember when people first got their reading devices? They loaded them up with e-books. But clearly that era is over.”
Every Friday, CCC’s “Beyond the Book” speaks with the editors and reporters of “Publishers Weekly” for an early look at the news that publishers, editors, authors, agents and librarians will be talking about when they return to work on Monday.