Top 10 Kindle books outsell dead-tree versions 2-1
Amazon's most popular books slurped up by e-readers
Amazon's top 10 books are selling twice as many digital editions as hardback and paperback combined, although the company still isn't providing any hard figures to back up the claim.
In July Amazon said that digital editions were outselling paper books overall, but now the top 1,000 books are selling more digital editions than hard copies, with the ratio being more than two to one for the top 10 titles.
It would be interesting to know how many Kindles have been sold, and how many of those digital editions are being downloaded onto tablets and/or telephones, but Amazon isn't sharing those figures. The company has always been very tight-lipped about volumes, which makes sense when it is more interested in Kindle the platform than Kindle the device.
Not that the devices aren't selling; the Kindle is Amazon's best-selling piece of electronics on both sides of the pond, though the fact that it's not available anywhere else obviously plays its part. The new Kindle is very cheap, and reviewed well despite still having a keyboard attached. But the battle for readers is more about platforms, and content, than technology.
It is the content aspect that is getting more interesting. Kindle launched Kindle Singles a couple of weeks back, offering a revenue-generating platform for those whose internal book is more of a pamphlet. Yesterday "Borders - GET PUBLISHED" went live for bloggers who want to find a way to make their content pay; the programme suggests copying and pasting blog content to create your own book which can then be sold for up to $9.99 ... assuming anyone is prepared to buy it.
But with attention spans declining so rapidly, perhaps the market is ripe for shorter texts. Given time, one of those top 10 books will only be available in electronic form, but we can't help thinking it will be a very long time. ®
Free books -- that's an order!
But what about the free books that you can 'order' through Amazon? To download these, you have to place an order with them, costing you '0.00'. And you will get emailed an order confirmation.
So do we know which books are in that top 1000, and how many are actually free?
I like statistics... Word them the right way, and you can interpret actual data any way you want (probably to your advantage).
I love my Kindle
I'm with Vince. I got my Kindle a couple of months ago and have rediscovered the joy of recreational reading. Especially once I got the leather cover for it. It now feels like a book, and it takes no time at all to forget about the medium and focus on the content. It's also great for series reading. I've long wanted to systematically work my way through Discworld, but in a small home, 40-odd extra books would be challenging to store. No such problem with the Kindle. For these reasons I too have no problem seeing how digital sales could significantly exceed dead-tree sales. All I need now is for Amazon to expand the library available to users here in NZ.
Kindle Good, Paper Bad.
I got a Kindle recently and it is really rather good. It's one of those things I bought thinking "hmm, will it be any use and will I care in a couple of weeks" but actually I do. I've read far more material than I've read in years in book form, just because it makes it more portable, and I can read books to suit my mood. I tend to be reading several books at once, but as I don't have to carry them all around, it makes that more accessible and feasible.
I can well believe that the digital versions are more popular.
Actually read a Dan Brown novel. Closely. Study his use of metaphor and simile. You'll notice that half the time his language is fighting itself.
It's a form of unreading, or unlearning.
Your argument is like claiming that smoking is good for you, because at least you're inhaling oxygen.
At a guess..
I'd say the top sellers are mostly super cheap or free books, and then the most sold titles in the paper stock lines were counted. No confirmation that the Kindle best "sellers" were the same books as the paper best sellers.
Standard Amazon PR release.. "We are doing really really well.", then "we are doing even better"..
Lots of announcements of success, no hard figures from anybody. So basically.. no information. Although I don't doubt that they are selling well.
As far as e-book readers in general go.. They are great. If you haven;t used one for a few days, you don't actually realise how pleasant they are to use. And it's more of an adult/mature reader gizmo than a young adult one, which is possibly why there are so many gadget blogs who seem offended by this device.