Children's/YA E-Book Use Led By Adults; "Guarded" On Tablet Influence

Press Release
Oct 1, 2012

Stamford, CT - 1 October, 2012 - Simba Information, a media and market research firm behind the Trade E-Book Publishing report and other market intelligence tools, has released the seventh edition of Children's Publishing Market Forecast, which outlines a complicated and mixed message about reading and tablet computers, and where the two intersect in the future of children's books.

In a nationally representative survey of 2,000 adults completed in August 2012, only 33.7% of respondents somewhat or strongly agreed that children would read more books for leisure if they had their own tablet, and 25.6% somewhat or strongly disagreed; approximately 40% of adults had no opinion. When the statement was posed to e-book users, the survey found the percentage of adults who somewhat or strongly agreed move up to about 44% and when the statement was posed to iPad owners, just over half (51.3%) somewhat or strongly agreed with the statement.

"We established in Trade E-Book Publishing that about half of iPad owners don’t use e-books and their own experience with tablet use impacts their thinking about how the devices could affect children's reading habits," said Michael Norris, senior analyst of Simba Information's Trade Books Group, commenting on the findings. "The thing companies like Amazon, Barnes & Noble and even Apple need to remember as they make a play for children's e-books and e-content is that a lot of adults just haven't made up their minds as to whether the introduction of digital content or devices like the new Kindle or Nook HD will result in kids reading more."

The report also found that a good chunk of children's e-book purchases are being led by adults reading the books for themselves: according to the findings, among the 5.8% of U.S. adults who have bought a children's e-book in the last 12 months, about 42% bought it to read on their own, compared to about 25% of all adults who said the same about buying a children's print book. According to the report, part of the reason children's books have lagged behind adult trade in terms of e-book adoption is due to most children getting their books as gifts purchased by a parent or a grandparent in their lives.

Children's Publishing Market Forecast 2013, also shows an exclusive, multi-year category analysis of more than a dozen key segments of the industry, a detailed demographic overview of children's book buyers, market size estimates through 2014, a new and proprietary review of children's e-book adoption trends, and much more.

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