Tablets boost print titles

19 October 2012

NEW YORK: Nearly 40% of tablet owners access newspaper and magazine content on these devices each month, a trend potentially "redefining" the digital market for publishers, a study has argued.

Drawing on data from 6,000 people possessing these gadgets, comScore, the insights provider, reported that 11.5% read newspaper articles via this medium "almost every day".

Another 11% pursued the same activity weekly or more, alongside 14.6% that did so between one and three times a month. In all, 37.1% of the sample thus consumed this type of content in August 2012.

Figures on this metric rose to 39.2% for people using Amazon's Kindle Fire, versus 38.3% among their counterparts that had purchased Apple's iPad, and 36.8% for devices powered by Google Android.

The Nook Tablet, manufactured by Barnes & Noble, had the lowest uptake here, on 13.8%, but also the highest number of readers logging on almost daily, with 13.4%.

"Tablets are fundamentally redefining how people consume news and information, with the format more conducive to reading longer form content than PCs or smartphones," said Mark Donovan, comScore's senior vice president, mobile.

"In the case of online newspapers, tablets are now driving 7% of total page views, an impressive figure considering the relative infancy of the tablet space."

Breaking down the current audience, comScore found that 27.4% were from the 25–34 year old group. An additional 20.1% fell into the 35–44 year old age range, and 18.4% were 45–54 year olds.

Turning to magazines, 39.6% of tablet users perused material from these titles on a monthly basis. The greatest share, 16.7%, engaged in such a pastime on no more than three occasions in this period.

A further 13.3% accessed articles, features and other such content at least once a week, and 9.7% pegged this level of frequency at around once every 24 hours.

Consumers possessing Amazon's Kindle Fire again had the highest uptake on 43.9% overall. Owners of Apple's iPad posted 40.3%, with the Nook Tablet population on 39.4%, and Android users on 38.5%.

As with newspapers, 25–54 year olds made up the majority of individuals that had participated in this activity. In terms of income, some 39% of early adopters earned over $100k a year, and 17% claimed annual salaries of $75k to $100k.

Data sourced from comScore; additional content by Warc staff