June 25, 2013

Americans’ reading habits over time

The population of e-book readers is growing. In the past year, the number of those who read an e-book in the past year increased from 16% of all Americans ages 16 and older in December 2011 to 23% in November 2012. At the same time, the percentage of Americans who read a printed book in the previous 12 months fell from 72% of the population in 2011 to 67% in 2012.
Report: Younger Americans’ Library Habits and Expectations

Among all Americans ages 16 and older, the percent in each age group who read at least one book in the past year

All Books
Print
Audio
E-Book
Age group
2012
2011
Significance: a b c d e f g
Among all Americans ages 16+, the % who read at least one book in the past year:
Year All (16+) 16-17 18-24 25-29 30-49 50-64 65+
2012 75% 90cefg 70fg 81fg 77fg 72 67
2011 78% 86dfg 88 76g 81fg 77g 68
Among all Americans ages 16+, the % who read at least one PRINT book in the past year:
Year All (16+) 16-17 18-24 25-29 30-49 50-64 65+
2012 67% 85cdefg 73efg 72g 66 65 61
2011 72% 77g 78fg 69 76g 71g 64
Among all Americans ages 16+, the % who listened to at least one AUDIOBOOK book in the past year:
Year All (16+) 16-17 18-24 25-29 30-49 50-64 65+
2012 13% 16g 12 15g 18cfg 10 7
2011 11% 10 9 16g 12 12 8
Among all Americans ages 16+, the % who read at least one E-BOOK book in the past year:
Year All (16+) 16-17 18-24 25-29 30-49 50-64 65+
2012 23% 25g 24fg 25g 31fg 17 14
2011 16% 12 21bg 20g 21bfg 15g 8

Note: Cells marked with a superscript letter (a) or another letter indicate a statistically significant difference between that age group and the age group designated by that superscript letter (within that year).

Source: Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life: Reading Habits Survey (Nov. 16-Dec. 21, 2011) and Library Services Survey (Oct. 15-Nov. 10, 2012).

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