At Nielsen Book’s annual conference (Nielsen are the people who count books worldwide) it was reported that many readers in Britain and the US buy both print and digital books which isn’t a big surprise.
Most people buy ebooks when they are cheaper, or when it is a riskier read, an unfamilar author perhaps. However, print is preferred when the price is similar, or if it’s a favorite author or if it’s bought as a gift.
That all makes complete sense, but I was interested to learn that teenagers want a print book for pleasure, and ebooks for schoolwork.
“They want people to know what they are reading. They are aware that print says something about them.”
I know someone who bought her ereader because she desperately wanted to read Wolf Hall but knew she didn’t have the stamina to hold a big fat book for long. Another friend relished the way she can change the font size – with deteriorating eyesight she can be a reader again.
When do you buy ebooks?
When they are cheap?
When you don’t want others to know what you’re reading? (Teenagers might like to show off, but sometimes it’s nice to have a bit of privacy. Both erotic fiction and happy-ever-after romance have had a real boost in sales since ebooks came on the scene.)
Me? I prefer print for fiction and ebooks for non-fiction. I’m not entirely sure why except I like the casual availability of a print book. I can pick one off the floor with the sincere intention of tidying up, only to flick it open and be lost for an hour…