As the world commemorates World Book Day on April 23 to celebrate the enjoyment of books, readers are encouraged to grab a book, find a cozy place and read away all day. And while UNESCO's General Conference probably thought of ink on paper when it first celebrated World Book Day in 1995, some 21st century book lovers have moved on to e-ink and no paper. How popular are e-books in the grand scheme of things though?
According to data from Statista’s Advertising & Media Outlook, e-book penetration still trails that of printed books by a wide margin across the globe. In the United States for example, where e-books are very popular in comparison, 23 percent of the population are estimated to have purchased an e-book last year, compared to 45 percent who bought a printed book.
These findings suggest that e-books will not be the final nail in the coffin of printed books but rather a complementary product that should ultimately benefit the publishing industry. People may grab an e-reader when they head to the beach or commute to work, but as far as actual books go, there’s nothing like the real thing.