Digital reading is really arousing interest
I’m not sure I want to be sexually aroused on the train on my way to work. A colleague told me that she regularly got hot and bothered on her morning commute when working through the Fifty Shades trilogy. As you may appreciate, this was not an easy conversation to pursue in the office, but I did establish that she openly read the paperback version rather than the e-book. Given that Fifty Shades of Grey became the fastest-selling paperback since records began and the first e-book to sell more than one million copies, one can only wonder how many other people are reading it on their morning commute.
The idea of covert reading on trains is something I’ve covered before in Media:Blogged ‘reading between the lines’, but as the latest National Readership Survey (NRS) released today (Friday 17 August) reports that e-book reading has more than doubled in the last 12 months (+122%), I thought it was worth another look.
The latest NRS certainly makes for interesting reading, albeit for completely different reasons to Fifty Shades. As well as reporting the first official print readership figure for The Sun’s Sunday edition (6.01 million) and Metro’s continued climb in readership (+10% to 3.6 million), there is plenty to digest when it comes to digital publications.
A record high of 6.5 million adults, or 13% of the population, have viewed a newspaper or magazine using a tablet, e-reader or mobile app in the past 12 months, which represents a rise of 12% on the previous quarter and 65% on the same period last year. Both newspapers and magazines are driving this digital growth in reading, but particularly the latter with a 20% quarterly increase in ‘past 12 months’ readership (+80% year on year). All of this is graphically summarised in an Ipsos MediaCT infographic on digital reading.
Although these are still relatively small figures in absolute terms, 2012 is the first year where we are starting to witness exponential growth. Digital reading of newspapers and magazines is, dare I say it, tumescent.