The Popularity & Rise of Digital Consumption

Half of all Americans own a smartphone or tablet
Mobile digital technology has seen major growth in the past year. It is even likely that you may be part of the 50% of adults in the U.S. that now own a smartphone or tablet.

In a recent survey conducted by The Pew Research Center, researchers found that tablets were popular for long-form reading such as for magazines and newspapers.

Furthermore, 66% of both tablet and smartphone users get news on their device.

Graph courtesy of the Pew Research Center

Are print newspapers a dying medium?
Although print may be considered a dying medium, the findings also show that print subscriptions are not cannibalized by digital subscriptions and both print and digital subscriptions remain popular in their respective mediums.

The survey reports 19% of tablet and smartphone users have a digital subscription, 9% of which have digital-only subscriptions, and 31% report having a print-only subscription.

The important point to take home here, is that there are more subscribers added than print subscribers lost.

Graph courtesy of The Pew Research Center

Tablets vs. Smartphones
At PressReader, we make our app compatible with most tablet and smartphone devices but there are different advantages to using a tablet versus smartphone. An important question to ask is:

Are our readers using PressReader differently on their tablets than on their smartphones?

According to data from the Pew research, occasional readers on both tablet and smartphone show similar behaviour. About half of tablet and smartphone users sometimes use their device for in-depth reading but among regular users, there is a clear distinction.

Among regular in-depth readers, tablet reading for newspapers and magazines is twice as popular than for occasional readers.

Graph courtesy of The Pew Research Center

Tablet reading is immensely preferred by our subscribers as it’s more convenient to read newspapers on a bigger screen. PressReader also has useful features on smartphones such as the on-demand-audio function that can be listened to hands-free during your morning commute.

These findings are very interesting to us, as we aspire to provide the best experience on all kinds of devices and thus need to understand that difference in reading habits as best as we can. With that being said, we want to leave you with one question:

[polldaddy poll=6581412]

-Alex Gagin