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Poll: E-Readers Need to Reach 'iPod Moment' to Catch On

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Poll: E-Readers Need to Reach 'iPod Moment' to Catch On

Article excerpt

The Kindle craze is upon us. But, e-readers will need to evolve to reach a broader audience, per The NPD Group's "E-readers Snapshot Report" released today. While 37 percent of consumers say they are interested in purchasing an e-reader, some 40 percent say they are "somewhat disinterested" or "not interested at all." Seventy percent of those not interested in e-readers said it is because they prefer the feel of an actual book. This could become less of an issue when e-readers target markets beyond the recreational book reader, said Ross Rubin, director of industry analysis for market research company The NPD Group. The market for Amazon Kindles, Sony Readers and other brands of e-readers is going to be limited as long as they are marketing books, and little else, Rubin said. "In our research, more consumers expressed an interest in magazines and newspapers, rather than just books." Textbooks are also another growth area, he said. In terms of reading quality, adding a larger, color screen could also draw consumers. However, while these features remain only a future prospect for e-readers, the top features consumers said they wanted in the NPD study are already available. This includes wireless capability (which the Kindle offers) and touch-screen technology (which the Sony Reader provides). "We're getting close to an iPod moment with e-books," says Rob Ederle, principal at the San Jose, Calif.--based Ederle Group. "Kindle has shown us how close we are getting, but we can get a lot closer. …

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