It seems that e-books have appeared almost from nowhere. This blog looks at little known and significant facts about e-books – the digital book revolution - that every avid reader should be aware of.
The first e-book was patented in 1949 by a Spanish teacher, Angela Ruiz who wanted to decrease the number of books her students had to carry to school. In recent years, e-books have boomed, especially with the introduction of products such as the Amazon Kindle which allows users to instantly download a book and begin reading in seconds. Find out some little known facts about the e-book revolution that you have probably never heard.
E-books are good for the environment. One tree can normally produce 50 books. This would mean that e-book readers would only have to read 50 books to save a tree. Instead of buying 50 paperbacks or hardbacks and let them gather dust on your bookshelf, why not invest in a Kindle and stop trees from being used for paper?
Electronic publishing saves paper. For example, one weekly issue of the New York Times consumes 75,000 trees. One year’s worth of Sunday papers produced by the New York Times destroys and consumes more than 3,900,000 trees. It’s much more environmentally friendly to subscribe online.
According to PEW Research, 75% of people between 16-29 have read a printed book in the last year, with the younger generation preferring digital products – with the exception of e-books. Mark Coker, Founder of Smashwords found that e-books that have over 100,000 words sell significantly more than e- books that have under 50,000 words.
When it comes to profit margins, e-books generate a higher profit margin than hardback books. A hardback has a profit of 41% for publishers, making roughly $5.50 for each book sold. E-books can make publishers nearly $8 per sale, creating a 75% profit margin. That is an increase of 34%! Publishers can even make money from books released decades ago, by converting a new edition and launching it digitally.
Only a tiny proportion of the market is making serious money from their efforts. Hugh Howey’s Author Earning report found that 100 authors made $100,000 or more from publishing e-books. With roughly 390,000 e-books being sold in the U.S. alone according to Bowker research, the chances of making $100,000 or more from an e-book are very slim.
Do you read E-books? What do you like about them? Share your thoughts with us on social media!