The answer may surprise you. If you’re like me, you might think immediately that it would be Amazon’s Kindle, which is indeed a monster. But WIRED reported that according to a recent Forrester survey, laptops currently trump the Kindle, but only slightly (35 percent vs. 32 percent). Coming in third was the iPhone, with 15 percent, followed by the Sony e-reader (12 percent), netbooks (10 percent) and the Barnes & Noble Nook (9 percent). Also at 9 percent was the iPad.
All of which was based on the fact that only 7 percent of U.S. online adults currently read e-books. A pretty small amount, right?
Well, among those who currently don’t, 8 percent said they expected to in a year — which means the audience would double. And Forrester has found that once readers dip their toes into the digital waters, they rapidly convert from print. And when Forrester asked what proportion of the books they expect to read a year from now would be e-books, the current e-book readers in the survey gave an average of 51 percent. That means that e-books could be a $3 billion business by 2015 “ a point at which the industry will be forever altered,” according to Forrester Analyst James McQuivey.
That is impressive. So based on that little nugget, who do you think will actually win out in the end?
Probably the Kindle, thanks to Amazon’s immense catalog and existing relationship with existing book buyers. Forrester said, “Four in 10 people who own or expect to buy an eReader shop at Amazon for physical books. Exactly 50% of people who bought an eBook in the past month have bought eBooks from Amazon’s Kindle store.”
So yeah, maybe it’s time to buy that new Kindle just in time for the holidays. It’s going to be around for a while. You can read the full article here.