800,000 Kindles sold since Kindle 3 launch?

We knew the Kindle 3 was doing well – Now the Codex Group is estimating that 800,000 Kindles have been sold between June and mid-November.

Kindle 3 was announced and was available for preorder at the end of July. If the 800,000 Kindle sold etimate is right that would mean that in 4 or so months 800,000 Kindles have been sold at a rate of 200,000 a month.

If true that’s mighty impressive – especially as the real sales start around Thanksgiving. Amazon could easily add another 1 to 1.5 million Kindle sales by end 2010. Then its ‘millions of Kindle 3s sold’ Press Release, which has probably already been written and optimized for maximum vagueness, can go out as planned on December 31st, 2010.

Codex Group’s Kindle Sales Estimates and Kindle Survey Results

Publishers Weekly discusses the Kindle Sales estimates and covers a survey  of 6,250 book buyers done by the Codex Group -

  1. 800,000 Kindles were sold between June and mid-November.  
  2. Total Kindle sales are at 2.7 million.
  3. Out of 6,250 book buyers 14% own an eReader and 21% own an eReader or Tablet.
  4. Lots of book buyers are planning to buy an eReader by end 2010.
  5. By mid-2011 22% of book buyers might own an eReader.

Perhaps the most interesting takeaway from the survey is the positive attitude book buyers have towards eBooks.

Only 14% of Book Buyers are averse to eBooks

The response of book buyers to eBooks is stunning -

  1. 26% of book buyers already read digital books.
  2. 34% more are willing to try digital books.
  3. Only 14% of print book readers said – ‘we would never read ebooks’.

Put another way – 86% of people who buy books are willing to try eBooks or are willing to be talked into trying eBooks.

This is just a survey so it’s not guaranteed – However, it does suggest a few things.

  1. There might not be a 50% to 70% contingent of readers who are married to physical books. Perhaps there never was, perhaps it’s gradually disappearing.
  2. Readers’ attitude towards eBooks and eReaders might be changing very quickly.
  3. The notion that eBooks will only reach 25% market penetration seems laughable when you consider that 60% of the people who buy books are open to eBooks.

60% is huge – Especially as eReaders creep nearer and nearer to the $100 mark.

If this survey has a lot of truth to it then we might see 25% penetration of ebooks by 2012 and by 2015 we might have 60% to 75% penetration by ebooks.

Kindle Owner Demographics supposedly in flux

Here’s what the survey reveals about how Kindle Owner demographics have changed between June 2010 and November 2010 -

  1. In June 2010 only 4% of book buyers over 65 owned a Kindle. Now 9.6% do. This would make sense given that Kindle 2.5 with its super sized fonts wasn’t available until around June. Not to mention that Kindle 3 is much lighter and more compact.
  2. The highest penetration of the Kindle in June was amongst the 55 to 64 age group (6.7%) and it’s still high in November (7.1%).
  3. There has been a huge spike in percentage of Kindle ownership amongst book buyers aged 18 to 24 years. In June 2010 it was just 3.2% and now in November it’s 6.5%. This makes a lot of sense as they probably find the $139 Kindle WiFi much more affordable.
  4. Percentage ownership of the Kindle spiked a lot amongst 35 to 44 year olds (from 5.8% to 8.5%) and amongst 45 to 54 year olds (from 6.2% to 8.3%).
  5. In every single demographic there was an increase in percentage of Kindle ownership. In 3 out of the 7 demographics percentage of Kindle ownership doubled.

This is all in just 5 months. Please note that we’re not discussing changes for the under 18 demographic, except including the fact that it doubled, due to small sample size.

These figures are stunning – The lower prices of the Kindle 3 and Kindle WiFi have made a huge difference and might have also contributed to a wider acceptance of eBooks.

There are probably lots of other factors contributing to the increase in acceptance of eBooks – lower prices, Kindle and Nook Reading Apps, iPad ownership, greater availability, press coverage of Kindle and Nook. However, it’s almost certain that the rapid increase in Kindle ownership is a Top 3 contributing factor.

We’re closer to a New Publishing World than we thought

With 14% Kindle ownership amongst book buyers we are seeing huge changes – 9% of total book sales are ebook sales, Publishers are in crisis mode, eReader companies are becoming hugely important, everyone is trying to get into books, lots more people are reading.

As the number of Kindle owners increases the importance of ebooks will increase and we’ll trigger off a vicious positive cycle where eReader growth and eBook growth will fuel each other.

The Kindle and Nook have helped put us in a position where a transformation of Publishing is guaranteed. The only question left is – Who’ll get the lion’s share of the profits and how much will that lion’s share amount to?

2 Responses

  1. “There are probably lots of other factors contributing to the increase in acceptance of eBooks – lower prices, Kindle and Nook Reading Apps, iPad ownership, greater availability, press coverage of Kindle and Nook.”

    And Pearl e-ink.

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