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Poll: Interest in e-book readers triples in 21 months

'Real books' brigade drops from 74% to 22%

A PC Advisor poll of 987 site visitors has found that almost a third (32.8 percent) already own an e-book reader, while 26.5 percent are interested in owning an e-book reader but have yet to splash out.

The figures represent a massive increase from the last time PCA ran this poll, back in February 2009. Interest has more than tripled in the space of 21 months.

Back at the start of 2009, just 5.2 percent of respondents said they own an e-book reader, while a further 11.6 percent expressed an interest in owning one. The combined group of interested voters, then, has rocketed from 16.8 to 59.3 percent.

"I have had a Kindle for about two months now and find it terrific," commented forum user tullie. "Once used to it, it is just like a real book."

mammak was another recent convert: "I got my Kindle 3 just yesterday, and already I'm hooked. On Amazon there is a long list of e-books for free, and anything else is only a few pounds. It is so easy to hold. You can easily increase/decrease the text size. And you can also link your Twitter and Facebook accounts with your Kindle."

'I prefer real books'

Asked 'Would you buy an e-reader?', a massive 74.2 percent of voters in Feb 2009 answered 'No, I prefer real books'. In Nov 2010 this had dropped to just 22.2 percent.

One remaining obstacle to adoption for some commenters, however, was the cost of e-book readers, and for the e-books themselves. "You pay something over £100 for the Kindle, then pay about £5 to £10 for each book," pointed out anchor.

However, the Forum Editor proposed that e-books "cost less than their paper versions. [My Kindle] has already paid for itself in terms of the savings I've made and there's a bonus - Amazon gave me the complete works of Charles Dickens for nothing."

One final issue that may be more difficult to get past is this one, put forward by OTT_B:

"I was asking about this a while ago, with the view to getting one for my rather literary biased partner. It turns out she likes the touch and smell of a book."

The remaining answer was 'No, I'm happy using a PC, smartphone or PDA to read e-books'. This received 9.1 percent of votes in Feb 2009, which increased to 18.4 percent in our recent poll.

Based on 987 votes, 12 November 2010, and 650 votes, February 2009. Add your vote to the poll, or have your say in the PC Advisor forums.

See also:

Group test: what's the best e-book reader?

E-book reader reviews

Sony Reader Pocket Edition PRS-350 review

Amazon Kindle 3 review

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