E-books & E-Readers in India: What Readers Want [Report]

The survey of 325 online users asked what would tempt someone to buy an e-book? Or would they stick to the dead tree edition?

Most of us still like the good old printed book. The dead tree edition, some say. But things are changing quite fast. E-books are slowly picking up, with Amazon, Google, Apple and the likes of Flipkart trying to push e-books. But what will make a reader buy an e-book? Or even an e-reader? A recent survey by IndiaBookStore, a search engine that helps users find price and availability of books offers some answers. The survey of 325 online users asked what would tempt someone to buy an e-book? Or would they stick to the dead tree edition? And other such questions. The respondents were classified as Light readers (36%), serious readers (30%) and obsessive readers (20%) and the rest were very light readers. Here are the findings.

What would tempt you to buy an e-reader?


  • 46% of light readers and 44% of our serious readers are waiting for e-book prices to come down.
  • The obsessive reader is the only one (excluding the academic and non-reader) for whom a change of lifestyle (43%) is more important to buy an e-book reader as compared to its price (38%).

Which reading format do you prefer?ebook2

  • 52% of readers are “traditional” i.e. they prefer print to electronic ink.
  • The light reader is more open to experimentation than his serious or obsessive counterpart. 53% of this segment prefers to read on an electronic medium than on paper.
  • 53% of our serious readers and a chunky 63% of the obsessive reader category would prefer a physical book to its virtual counterpart.

Why have you not bought an e-book reader yet?ebook3

  • 61% of our participants haven’t bought an e-book reader yet because of the inhibitive prices while 43% would buy one the moment the prices go down.
  • The serious reader is the most concerned about the prices of e-book readers as 56% of them haven’t bought one for the same reason.15% of our light readers would rather buy an equivalent electronic device that can help one to read books and do more. This number is the highest across all categories.
  • The obsessive reader, on the other hand, is more likely to have an e-book reader with 23% of Light Reader Serious Reader Obsessive Reader the category owning one.

Which e-book reader would you buy?ebook4

  • The most staggering revelation of all was the fact that 85% of our respondents would buy a Kindle if they had to buy an e-book reader.
  • The other categories are open to experimentation. While 87% of the serious reader population is content with a Kindle, 9% of them would look for a cheaper option.

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