But while print remains at the center of the book-reading landscape as a whole, there has been a distinct shift in the e-book landscape over the last five years. These are among the main findings of a nationally representative telephone survey of 1,520 American adults conducted March 7-April 4, 2016. American has read 4 books in the book reports online 12 months.
Readers today can access books in several common digital formats, but print books remain substantially more popular than either e-books or audio books. In addition to being less popular than print books overall, the share of Americans who read e-books or listen to audio books has remained fairly stable in recent years. Americans have either read an e-book or listened to an audio book in the last year, but relatively few Americans read books in these digital formats to the exclusion of print books. However, some demographic groups are slightly more likely than others to do all of their reading in digital format. Compared with those who have not attended college, college graduates are more likely to read books in general, more likely to read print books, and more likely to consume digital-book content. Hispanics are also substantially more likely to read books on cellphones than on e-readers or traditional computers.
Cellphones also play a relatively prominent role in the reading habits of Americans who have not attended college. But these differences are much less pronounced when it comes to reading books on cellphones. A similar share of Americans report that they read for pleasure, for work or school, or to keep up with current events compared to the most recent time these questions were asked in 2011. At the same time, there is not always such a direct relationship between book reading and overall reading for specific purposes. As noted earlier in this report, young adults are more likely to read books than older adults. And when asked about specific reasons why they might read a range of content, these young adults are much more likely than older adults to say that they read for work or school, or to research a specific topic of interest. As noted later in this report, young adults are especially likely to do any reading for work or school.
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