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July 19

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Kindle Books Outselling Hardcovers

by Ann-Katrina

Kindle eReader from Amazon

Kindle books, according to Mashable, are outselling hardcovers. Over the last three months there was a 30% margin and in the last month there was a 44% margin. Granted, these numbers are skewed since Amazon doesn’t reveal all of its data (i.e. how many books were actually sold) nor does it compare to how many paperback books were sold.

The article, however, did get me thinking about why ebook sales might be on the rise. One thing that comes to mind is the intangible nature of the ebook. With a traditional hardcover, or even paperback, the customer will need to pick it up, hold it in her hands, sniff at it a little bit, figure out where she’s going to put it, and then flip it over to see the heart-stopping amount of money she’ll need to dish out for it.

On the flip side, ebooks are ephemeral. There’s no need to make room for it and it’s (usually) much cheaper than the hardcover equivalent. For the price of one hardcover, you can grab two ebooks (assuming that it’s not a bestseller or renowned author). Plus, it’s easy.

With the click of a couple buttons, sometimes only one, you have a new book waiting to be read. It’s so easy to be caught up in the whirlwind of buying that you don’t realize how many books you’ve just bought…and it all goes back to ebooks having an ephemeral quality. With physical books, you can look at the stacks and say to yourself, I think I’ve picked up too many books, but with ebooks, you don’t have that. Or am I wrong?

I’m curious, if you’re an ebook reader, why? Do you appreciate the books taking up less space? Do you appreciate the blazing speed at which you can have the book and start reading? Is it something else altogether?

Comments on Kindle Books Outselling Hardcovers

  1. # Lisa (Book Blab) wrote on July 19, 2010 at 11:25 pm:

    I am a bibliophile like everyone else in the book blog world. I have a complete and utter weakness with physical books… however, I did get a Kindle for my birthday and the main reason I wanted one was the space thing. I just wanted to cut down on the number of items I was putting on my shelves. It makes no sense really, because I still should theoretically be READING the books I already have, but now I am buying more books that i still have to actually READ. Ugh. I can’t win…. :0)

  2. # She wrote on July 20, 2010 at 7:57 pm:

    It makes me sad. :( I like books! I am biased though as I have never used an e-reader… ever.
    .-= She´s last blog ..Teaser Tuesday =-.

  3. # Ann-Kat wrote on July 21, 2010 at 3:38 pm:

    I know exactly what you mean, Lisa, and I think if I ever got a Kindle (or other dedicated reading device) I’d be confronted with the same exact problem. LOL

  4. # Ann-Kat wrote on July 21, 2010 at 3:41 pm:

    Don’t be sad, She. I like books too…the feel, touch, smell, taste, etc. However, there are those books which are so awful that after you finish reading you tut and say, What a waste of a perfectly good tree and instantly wish you could burn it so it would not inflict itself on anyone else. If it were an ebook, you could just delete it…no tree needed to die to bring it to you and you’ll be certain that your copy, at least, won’t make anyone else’s eyes burn. :)

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