The new survey findings were published today a report titled, Book Reading 2016.
From Pew Research:
…a Pew Research Center survey finds that the share of Americans who have read a book in the last 12 months (73%) has remained largely unchanged since 2012. And when people reach for a book, it is much more likely to be a traditional print book than a digital product. Fully 65% of Americans have read a print book in the last year, more than double the share that has read an e-book (28%) and more than four times the share that has consumed book content via audio book (14%).
But while print remains at the center of the book-reading landscape as a whole, there has been a distinct shift in the e-book landscape over the last five years. Americans increasingly turn to multipurpose devices such as smartphones and tablet computers – rather than dedicated e-readers – when they engage with e-book content. The share of e-book readers on tablets has more than tripled since 2011 and the number of readers on phones has more than doubled over that time, while the share reading on e-book reading devices has not changed. And smartphones are playing an especially prominent role in the e-reading habits of certain demographic groups, such as non-whites and those who have not attended college.
These are among the main findings of a nationally representative telephone survey of 1,520 American adults conducted March 7-April 4, 2016.
Some Key Findings From the Report
- The share of Americans who have read a book in the last year is largely unchanged since 2012; more Americans read print books than either read e-books or listen to audio books
- Nearly four-in-ten Americans read print books exclusively; just 6% are digital-only book readers
- College graduates are roughly four times as likely to read e-books and about twice as likely to read print books and audio books – compared with those who have not graduated high school
- The share of Americans who read books on tablets or cellphones has increased substantially since 2011, while the share using dedicated e-readers has remained stable
- About one-in-five Americans under the age of 50 have used a cellphone to read e-books; blacks and Americans who have not attended college are especially likely to turn to cellphone – rather than other digital devices – when reading e-books
- The share of Americans who read in order to research a specific topic of interest has increased in recent years
- Older and younger adults are equally likely to read for pleasure or to keep up with current events; younger adults are more likely to read for work or school, or to research a topic of interest
Direct to PDF Version of Report (20 pages)
Direct to Additional Demographic Data