John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Kindle Feels iPad’s Heat, Sees E-Reader Lead Going Up in Smoke

When Apple CEO Steve Jobs first announced the company’s new iBookstore and iBooks application for the iPad back in January, he said that while Amazon had done a great job with its Kindle e-book reader, Apple planned to “stand on their shoulders and go a little further.” And while that remark might have seemed like simple Jobsian bravado at the time, these days it’s looking downright prophetic. According to a new survey from ChangeWave, the iPad has doubled its share of the e-reader market since August and is now just 15 percentage points shy of the Kindle (click image to enlarge).

Of the 2,800 respondents ChangeWave surveyed, 32 percent used the iPad as their e-reader and 47 percent the Kindle. That’s far less of a disparity between the two than we saw in the research outfit’s August survey, which found 62 percent of respondents using a Kindle and just 16 percent using an iPad. In other words, by this measure, between August and November, the iPad’s share of the U.S. e-reader market rose 16 percentage points and the Kindle’s fell 15 points. And that trend seems likely to continue in the months ahead. Of those respondents planning on buying an e-reader in the next 90 days, 42 percent said they’d like an iPad while only 33 percent said they’d opt for a Kindle.

Said ChangeWave’s director of research, Paul Carton, “The Amazon Kindle is hanging on to a rapidly diminishing lead over the Apple iPad among current e-reader owners….The iPad is likely to be the biggest beneficiary of the expanding e-reader market this holiday season.”

If that’s the case, Credit Suisse analyst Spencer Wang’s prediction in February that Amazon might see its e-book market share slip from 90 percent to 72 percent this year and to 35 percent by 2015 might not be so far off.