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E-book consumption has doubled in last 18 months


Consumption of e-books has doubled since September 2009 as people increasingly purchase these products to use on tablets and e-readers like the Amazon Kindle, according to new research.

KPMG’s latest Media and Entertainment Barometer, conducted by YouGov, shows that and monthly spend on these goods is almost equalling the amount of money splashed out on music via the internet.

The study indicates that the average shopper spends £4 per month on e-books, which is double what is spent on online games and four times as much as what people pay for streamed TV. On average, downloaded music accounts for £5 of consumers’ monthly disposable income.

David Elms, Head of Media at KPMG in the UK, said: “Our survey clearly shows there is an appetite for paid for ‘on the move’ content.

“The proliferation of apps and devices is driving expenditure online at a faster pace than fixed-line computers.”

Other technological trends experienced in the last 18 months include the advent of smartphones and tablet devices as consumer favourites.

The KPMG study shows that the proportion of Britons who now own a smartphone has increased from 27 per cent to 36 per cent in the last six months, while tablets, which were first introduced to the UK market in July 2010, have seen ownership levels more than double to five per cent during the same period.

With 54 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds saying they owned a smartphone, it is clear that retailers need to adapt to new technology to ensure strong sales both now and in the years to come.

Hardly a week goes by without another company in the industry launching a mobile website or a smartphone app as part of their multichannel strategy, with community pharmacy and health & beauty retailer Lloydspharmacy the most recent firm to do so.

Last week the high street organisation unveiled a mobile app that allows users to asses if they are at risk of developing diabetes, but other companies and retail organisations primarily use apps as a way of informing consumers of their stock and store locations.

The Mall at Cribbs Causeway last week became the second shopping centre in the UK, after Westfield London, to launch an app. Once downloaded, the tool provides shoppers with a store directory and updates on events and promotions.

Published on Monday 13 June by Editorial Assistant

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