Digital Revolution? Kindle Ebooks Outsell Real Books on Christmas

Last month, Amazon’s Kindle broke sales records as it was once again a hot item to give this holiday season. When countless people turned on their new Christmas Kindles for the first time yesterday, what do you think was the first thing that they did? That’s right: they bought ebooks to fill up their Kindle hard drives. A lot of them.

In fact, those new Kindle owners broke a record. According to Amazon, yesterday marked the first time that more ebooks were sold than real books.

Did digital books finally defeat pen and paper this Christmas, though? Let’s think about this logically:

  • While not releasing any numbers, Amazon announced that more Kindle books were sold than real books through Amazon on Christmas day.
  • It would make sense that there would be elevated Kindle purchases on Christmas; people getting new Kindles as gifts would certainly want to make them useful by adding their favorite books.
  • It also makes sense that real book sales would be down. The Christmas shopping season would have passed and most people were concentrating on their families, not shopping, that day.

If we follow the logic trail, then Amazon’s announcement that the “Kindle is the most gifted item ever” makes perfect sense. Its announcement is also mostly PR smoke and mirrors. More people may have Kindles now than ever, but ebook sales still pale in comparison to the countless paper books that were sold this Christmas season.

We do have to give credit where it is due, though; it is another milestone for the constantly-growing e-commerce giant. Amazon sold over 9.5 million items (a staggering 110 items per second) at its peak on December 14th, yet another record. It’s also safe to say that the Kindle, even with new competitors entering its territory, will continue to dominate and grow as more and more people embrace digital prints from their favorite authors.

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