Philip Jones wrote about the latest surveys: “E-books are really going global, sales rising worldwide”. Consumer e-books accounted for 38% of Britain’s publishers’ digital sales in 2011, up from 13% in 2010, and compared to 2% in 2009.
This is a hefty shift in the market, and one that will impact pretty much every part of the trade book business: bookshops, agents, commissioning, and of course, writers. However the digital migration had minimal impact on the overall children’s bookmarket, taking only just over 1% of value share of children’s books.”
From scholarly publishing to trade e-books, the industry is facing an unprecedented level of upheaval, some of it being pushed through by the internet, and the huge tech giants such as Amazon, and Apple.
Australia and India have joined the UK and the US in leading the world in e-book adoption rates, according to Bowker Market Research’s Global eBook Monitor with adult fiction the main target of book buyers in Great Britain and Australia, while in India and South Korea the concentration is on both professional and academic/textbooks.
According to the research 24% of respondents in India have bought an e-book in the six months prior to the survey, putting that market ahead of Australia (21%), the UK (21%), and the US (20%). Respondents in France and Japan were the least likely to have purchased an e-book, at 5% and 8% respectively.
The report reveals that the market for e-books is set for a rapid increase in Brazil and India.
Over 50% of respondents from these two countries said that they were likely to buy an e-book in the next six months, a prediction that would double the number of e-book buyers in India, and triple the number of e-book buyers in Brazil. About a third of respondents in the UK and US say they have plans to purchase an e-book soon, compared to one in five in France, and one in seven in Japan.
Purchase rates in India, Brazil, the UK, US and France are highest in the 25–34 age group, with Australia, Spain, Germany, South Korea and Japan highest among 18-24 year youngs.
“The market for e-books is experiencing exponential growth internationally, with news each week of new e-readers and specialist e-retailers,” said Kelly Gallagher, vice-president, Bowker Market Research. “Publishers and retailers must adapt to a very changed landscape.”