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Old 11-08-2010, 11:42 AM   #1
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Post Ebooks = $1 billion

I spent about that much already.

http://mashable.com/2010/11/08/e-boo...=Google+Reader
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Old 11-08-2010, 02:13 PM   #2
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Uh-oh the cats outa-the-bag now...Here comes a new tax !!!!
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Old 11-08-2010, 08:17 PM   #3
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I can't speak for the fellow who wrote the summary at the link ... but the person who wrote the analyst report that's quoted (ie the analyst) makes some astounding (and unlikely, in my opinion) statements.

Try this: ebook sales (books, not readers) will be 30% lower in 2011 than 2010. Yup ... the prediction is $665 million more sold of ebooks from Amazon et al this year but less than $400 million more in 2011. They predict $301 million in ebooks sales in 2009; $966 million in 2010 and just $1.349 million in 2011. Really?

Or this: most people read ebooks on laptops. Or this: half as many people read ebooks on an iPhone as on a Kindle. 80% as many people read ebooks on a Sony vs an iPhone. Or this: Nook and iPad are tied for eReading.

Or this: Exactly 50% of people who bought an eBook in the past month (the report is dated Nov 5) have bought eBooks from Amazon’s Kindle store. Does that mean they shopped at Amazon last month? Or once, ever?

In the July report by this same analyst, the conclusion was the only way eReader folks like Amazon, Sony and B&N could survive was to strip out all connectivity and features in "a race to the bottom". Four months later he writes: Starting next year, however, more people will come into the market for whom reading an occasional book on a tablet PC will suffice. Dedicated reading devices, no matter how cheap, will not be of interest to them if they can’t also do a few other things like check email or access apps.

Laugh or cry? The analyst consistently has no idea of what ebooks are, what ereader owners expect, or where the industry is going. 2009 saw 3% of publisher revenue from ebooks; this year closing in on 10%. In 2011, perhaps 20% or more. Amazon stated it may surpass unit sales of pbooks with unit sales of (paid) ebooks in 2011.

Hands up anyone who thinks there will be an expansion of paperback distribution in 2011 with more stores opening and new chains popping up? Or perhaps ebooks are actually the way of the future and therefore consumers will demand more and more elegant ereader devices fine-tuned to better, um, reading experience?
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Old 11-08-2010, 08:52 PM   #4
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SensualPoet, I can't find the things that you mention. The report link took me to a page that seemed optimistic about ebooks. Granted, the analyst talked about readers and their ereaders as if he was discussing some exotic creature in its natural habitat, but he only talked about the 5 year projection.
Can you tell me what link you followed? I like to read fiction.
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Old 11-08-2010, 09:47 PM   #5
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I was reading from the actual report, not the analyst's blog trying to flog it. You'd have to pay for the report to read it.
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Old 11-09-2010, 04:01 AM   #6
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Ah, OK. Did he mention where he got the statistics? I'm curious about the "Just 7% of online adults who read books read eBooks" statement.
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Old 11-09-2010, 08:15 AM   #7
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His company polled a panel of 4000 online folks. It's a reputable company, and the methodology, I am sure, is credible. It's the conclusions drawn and the inability of this analyst to understand who the 10% of the population are who read 2 or more books a month that make up the customer base. He even noted he hasn't read a certain recent bestseller as a sort of personal proof point of his argument.

Sometimes these so-called analysts, and the groupie journalists who follow them blindly, think of ereaders as another "gadget", like a Ronco chopper or a wireless indoor/outdoor thermometer. They are not: they enable an enhanced reading experience which includes just reading in a more convenient way. Ereaders of one description or another are likely to have a long-term ride in many households.

The flip flop from "race to the bottom" to must "check email" for ereaders in a mere four months surely is a red flag. 30% of first week sales of John Grosham's The Confession were ebooks, not hard covers as reported in another thread here. It does not appear to me that the ebook trajectory is tapering off.

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Old 11-09-2010, 08:34 AM   #8
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Here are two authoritative sources talking about ebook sales:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/20/te.../20kindle.html

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Old 11-09-2010, 08:45 AM   #9
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I'm not particularly smart about this sort of thing, but it seems to me that there are many different kinds of reading going on these days. I know people who run, not walk, to buy the latest in Harlequin books when they come out and they know the release schedule for the various kinds of imprints for these books. It may be all they read, but read them they do. I know folks who seldom read anything not work related, but are reading all the time. I know folks who read all the best sellers and I know people who read only when they are on holiday, but may read a dozen books at that point. And then there are the library only folks.

Will they all want/need/buy the same eReader? Probably not, but more and more of them will take the plunge and buy *something*. I see an ever greater diversity in the kind of readers out there and would not be surprised to find something basic hanging by the till at Walmart, along with other impulse items at some point.

I live in a community of 100,000. We have two chain bookstores and a handful of used book shops. And although our library has not yet jumped on the ebook train, I'm finding people who said they would never find digital reading enjoyable six months ago buying their first ereader now--and in one case planning on buying them as xmas gifts for all of their kids.

This kind of reporting doesn't say very much of value, I suppose, but I bet that what I am seeing now is just the tip of the iceberg. It will take awhile for the media and formal analysis to catch up with these trends.
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Old 11-09-2010, 09:40 AM   #10
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Well, if you have 4000 people, 10% of which read at least two books a month, and 7% of those read ebooks, that just leaves 28 people for the "interesting facts about the average e-book reader". And since nearly half of them don't have an ereader, that means that the analysis of ereaders came from around 15 people. The page for ebook devices on wiki lists 31 models under "Current eBook Reader devices that use e-paper technology" alone, and that list is incomplete. I'm not surprised that he didn't get the whole picture.

And I'm not sure what to make of this (from the blog):
Quote:
Did you know that the two most common ways people get books today is borrowing them from a friend or getting them from the library? Evidently content – at least in the book business – is already quite free, even without the help of digital.
Is he trying to say: look at how much money a handful of people spend on ebooks, and they get most of them for free?
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Old 11-09-2010, 09:45 AM   #11
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Agreed on the matter of all of them buying the same reader. As it is often said in the IT industry, what is best for me typically depends on what you find most important. The Kindle has great functions adn excelletn speed but costs a lot and its not touch screen. The Sony PRS 350SC is touch screen and works great but its expensive. The Sony PRS950SC is also touch screen and large format but is very expnsive. My Libra Pro is cheap but it doesn't have the functions that the Kindle and Sony PRS does. So the one that is best for you depends on what you need.

I like the Kindle and plan on buying one someday but don't want to pay that much for one. Aluratek was willing to sell for he price I wanted to pay.
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Old 11-10-2010, 08:17 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SensualPoet
ebook sales (books, not readers) will be 30% lower in 2011 than 2010. Yup ... the prediction is $665 million more sold of ebooks from Amazon et al this year but less than $400 million more in 2011. They predict $301 million in ebooks sales in 2009; $966 million in 2010 and just $1.349 million in 2011. Really?
I don't have the report, and it's unfair for me to question your reading comprehension skills. But that doesn't mesh with what I've been seeing about this report.

For example, McQuivey's blog post states:

Quote:
Originally Posted by McQuivey
2010 will end with $966 million in eBooks sold to consumers. By 2015, the industry will have nearly tripled to almost $3 billion, a point at which the industry will be forever altered.
Sounds to me like he's predicting a major increase in ebook sales over the next 5 years. He goes on to point out that the early adopters are also the people who buy the most books; that the people who own dedicated devices buy 2/3 of books in digital form now; that sooner rather than later, paper will be just an "adjunct" to digital sales, etc. He certainly isn't predicting a huge upswing in paper sales.


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Originally Posted by SensualPoet View Post
Or this: most people read ebooks on laptops. Or this: half as many people read ebooks on an iPhone as on a Kindle. 80% as many people read ebooks on a Sony vs an iPhone. Or this: Nook and iPad are tied for eReading.
OK, so do you have any proof to the contrary? Or another set of studies which indicates the study itself is flawed?

And you are keeping in mind that the percentages are not exclusive and, at least what I've seen, aren't measuring time on the device? E.g. if I read one book on my laptop and 20 on my Nook, and you read one on your laptop and 20 on your iPad, and so forth, then you'll end up with laptops getting a high percentage in this particular study.

To put it another way: Kindle, Nook, Sony, iPad and iPhone owners pretty much all own laptops and, at some point or another, read on them. I.e. it's basically just pointing out that these groups have laptops in common.

I might add this is not the first time I've heard that most people have used a laptop to read ebooks.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SensualPoet
Or this: Exactly 50% of people who bought an eBook in the past month (the report is dated Nov 5) have bought eBooks from Amazon’s Kindle store. Does that mean they shopped at Amazon last month? Or once, ever?
Since I don't have the report, I can't state precisely. But the interpretation I've seen, and hold, is that at this moment half of ebook buyers are using the Kindle store at least once, though not necessarily for all purchases.


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Originally Posted by SensualPoet
In the July report by this same analyst, the conclusion was the only way eReader folks like Amazon, Sony and B&N could survive was to strip out all connectivity and features in "a race to the bottom".
H'm, sounds familiar. No, wait, MR readers were predicting the iPad would decimate all the competition, and they'd have to give away ebook readers in cereal boxes in order for that form factor to survive.

Going off of his July blog post, it sounds more like he specifically expects the tablets to be so much better for reading in a few years (better screens, lower power consumption), and so ubiquitous, that there will be barely any qualitative differences between a dedicated (eInk) reader and a tablet.

While I'm not sure I fully agree with him, a few months ago that was definitely the MR groupthink. Oh, except MR'ers were expecting it to happen immediately rather than in 2 years.

And unlike them, he was expecting Amazon not only to survive but flourish in the new era, whilst MR'ers where imagining the total destruction of Amazon at the hands of Apple.

Are you sure this guy has no concept of what he's talking about?


Quote:
Originally Posted by SensualPoet
Four months later he writes: Starting next year, however, more people will come into the market for whom reading an occasional book on a tablet PC will suffice. Dedicated reading devices, no matter how cheap, will not be of interest to them if they can’t also do a few other things like check email or access apps.
Actually, that sounds about right.

Heavy readers, who make up a disproportionate amount of book revenues, will benefit from a dedicated device. As tablets become a more routine part of the landscape (presuming that's the case), people who have one and only buy a few books a year will be satisfied with those devices.

Or, think of it this way. If you live in New York City, you only need to drive a car a handful of times a year; otherwise you can do fine with public transportation and taxis. So why would a city dweller go out and buy a car, even if it's fairly affordable?


I've read lots of analysis and pundits who are way off base. However, McQuivey seems a lot more on the ball than most, and strikes me as more consistent than you suggest. Again, I only have access to the summaries, not the report itself; as such I am reluctant to say it, but maybe you're just not getting the gist of his positions.
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Old 11-10-2010, 01:04 PM   #13
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I think its a fad and will fade out in time....Ya cant dig up an ebook at an archeological site !!
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Old 11-10-2010, 07:49 PM   #14
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I've read lots of analysis and pundits who are way off base. However, McQuivey seems a lot more on the ball than most, and strikes me as more consistent than you suggest. Again, I only have access to the summaries, not the report itself; as such I am reluctant to say it, but maybe you're just not getting the gist of his positions.
You don't seem that reluctant to say anything, actually.

There's no point having a play-by-play argument about what McQuivey says if you can't play the points back and, as the reports are for purchase, I don't feel comfortable quoting large portions (the reports are, after all, under 10 pages long and priced at $495 each).

I will merely restate: in July, he recommends manufacturers of ereaders strip out ALL features, including ALL real-time connectivity; and then four months later he recommends manufacturers of ereaders will fail unless they include email access at a minimum.

This analyst has demonstrated in about five separate reports that he has no concept of what the consumer looks like who actually reads in volume -- the 10% or so of Americans reading 2 or more books a month. We are not talking about folks who "read" on a laptop as we are doing posting here at MR: we are talking about folks who buy the latest Stephen King and "read" it on their Blackberry or Windows 7 laptop vs a Kindle or a Kobo. It's the latter who will buy the content and who will ultimately drive the industry and the changes within publishing as a category.
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Old 11-15-2010, 03:59 PM   #15
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I don't think the iPad predicters were all that far off. They didn't strip out the connectivity, but eReader prices PLUMMETED. And in doing so, they are selling quite nicely. There is no way dedicated readers would sell well against multi-function tablets without a significant cost differential.

We won't know, cuz all the eInk makers dropped their prices dramatically before they had a chance to compete against the iPad (and the slew of forth coming android tablets).

Not saying that NO ONE wants an eInk reader for what it is -- just that head to head, if price was not significantly cheaper, devices like the iPad would have indeed wiped them off the board.

With Kobo (I believe) we already have the entry point at $99.

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