With electronic book reading device ownership on the rise, it comes as no surprise that digital reading is becoming increasingly popular. According to new findings from the Pew Internet & American Life Project, 23% percent of Americans age 16 and older say they have read an e-book in the past year, compared to 16% a year ago. Meanwhile, printed book readership fell from 72% to 67%.
While The New York Times is observing an increase in digital reading among children between the ages of 6 and 17, Pew reports e-books are most popular with adults age 30-49, as well as people with college or graduate degrees and those living in households earning more than $75,000. With teens 16-17 seeing one of the largest spikes in e-reading last year, undergrad faculty should be primed for an incoming class of digital learners.
Interestingly, book readership in any format did not experience a statistically significant shift in 2012. Thus while e-reader adoption is rapidly rising, it’s not transforming the popularity of reading.