The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project published survey results today that every public library should be paying very close attention to.
The study found that 29 percent of adults in the United States own either a tablet computer or an ebook reader. The results showed that 19 percent own a tablet computer and 19 percent own an ereader. The study found that both those percentages doubled from 10 percent in December 2011 to 19 percent in January 2012. A ton of people got a tablet or an ereader for Christmas.
The results showed that the number of adults with ereaders and tablets more than tripled in just 14 months. In November of 2010, 5 percent owned a tablet and 6 percent owned an ereader.
If you dig into the demographics, you will see that more women own ereaders than men. 21 percent of adult women own an ereader while 16 percent of adult men do. Compare this with the 19 percent of both men and women that own a tablet. Women are 31 percent more likely than men to own a dedicated ereader but are just as likely as men to own a tablet.
This is yet another data point showcasing the rapid adoption of ereaders and tablets. If the trend continues we can easily expect to see the majority of Americans with a tablet or ereader within a few years. Libraries would be wise to allocate much larger portions of their budgets to ebooks if they want to stay relevant.