One third of Brits now e-reading, says Bowker study

Nearly a third of British adults (31%) say they are likely to buy an e-book in the next six months, according to a new study from Bowker.

According to report Understanding the Digital Consumer, the percentage of adults who have purchased an e-book has seen an almost threefold increase since February 2011.

The Kindle has become the e-reader of choice for UK adults, with 40% of those reading e-books using the Kindle most often to do so. Tablet devices have more than doubled market share between February 2011 and March 2012, with 12% reporting that they use them most often.

Growth in e-book consumption is being driven by older readers, particularly those aged 45-54. Just over a quarter of this age group bought an e-book in the six months to March 2012, up from 17% in November 2011. Men are more likely than women to buy e-books, but women buy more and also download more free titles.

Children aged 10 and under are reading e-books on laptops rather than dedicated e-readers, according to the study. However from the age of 11, the Kindle becomes their most widely used device.

The 2011/12 Understanding the Digital Consumer study is based on online surveys involving 3,000 British adults aged 16-84, with an extended set of questions around children and their use of digital content.