Amazon E books outsell hardbacks and paperbacks combined
It’s official: ebooks have eclipsed their print counterparts — at least on Amazon. According to a new press release from the online retailer, as of today, customers are buying up more virtual books than hardback and paperback books combined. The milestone is impressive, and highlights both the popularity of the company’s e-reader, the Kindle, and the rise of the ebook as a legitimate publishing medium.
Amazon’s Kindle bookstore continues to grow by leaps and bounds. According to the company, in 2011, it had sold 3 times as many ebooks as it did during the same period of time in 2010. With rumors swirling about an Amazon tablet (or 2) on the horizon, the future looks quite bright for the company that used to be better known for its online marketplace than its e-reading ventures.
At least part of the success can likely be attributed to Amazon’s open model for selling its virtual books. While other platforms like Apple’s iBooks are only readable on Apple’s own hardware, Kindle ebooks can be read across almost any platform imaginable — from Android phones and the iPad to the web itself.
From a personal standpoint, this fits with what I’m seeing. Skywalker–Close Encounters on the Appalachian Trail and Skywalker–Highs and Lows on the Pacific Crest Trail both sell 3 or 4 times as many e-books on Kindle, as physical copies. Wow. I never thought e-books would fly, yet I’m a huge beneficiary of it!