IndexAn article in today’s issue of The Bookseller, discussed this survey by Mintel. Here’s a snippet. A lot more info in the article:

Half of all book buyers expect to pay less for e-books, according to new research by Mintel, but those book readers who already own e-book devices have marginally more realistic expectations over price, suggesting that the transition of the big publishers to agency terms is helping to shift consumers’ attitudes—albeit slowly.

The survey also found that nearly half of readers (49%) said they would rather own and read actual books rather than e-books, but the survey also found that almost one in ten book readers say they will buy fewer books in 2011 than in 2010.

On pricing the research found that younger readers were the most likely to expect to pay less—reflecting, according to Mintel, their general experience of being able to procure digital product for less or free.


  1. The numbers in this report are so well within the margins of error that the ‘wishful thinking’ conclusions are totally unmerited and unjustified imho.

    I find it quite comical to see this section of the industry flailing around for any support for their ridiculously high prices.

  2. I think my expectations of ebook pricing are quite realistic: if you sell me a crippled book that is not formatted well, cannot be shared or given away, can only be read on one type of ereader, it is worth less to me than a paperback, and I will not pay inflated prices for a crippled product.

  3. A real survey of ebook buyers would be interesting. Maybe buyers like me are in the minority, but I sure see a lot of posts on ebook forums by people who like me have changed their buying habits to avoid all ebooks over a certain price well short of the agency prices for new books. And many, like me, still read those books, whether from the library or other sources.

  4. I’m with Becca and Ellen. I will not pay print book equivalent prices for a small blip of a digital file that is crippled by DRM and other restrictions.

    To tell you the truth, I do not see that old school print publishers bring anything at all to the table when it comes to ebooks except for restrictions, limitations, price controls and other impediments.

    So I’m pretty close to the point where I just won’t buy any ebook put out by a major publisher. I’ll read it and if I like it I’ll mail a few bucks direct to the author.

  5. I very rarely read print books. I prefer ebooks. Even though ebooks are my preferred format. I think I’m quite realistic about what an ebook is worth, and it’s not worth more than the print book. That’s meant that I’m now using my local virtual library. I use to monitor prices.

    If they don’t have agency prices for print books, I don’t understand why we have to have it for ebooks. And I’m so tired of hearing that we have to have DRM and high prices because of piracy. Just makes me think if the publishing industry treats me like a pirate, I might as well be one.

  6. Greedy publishers can say all they want. I refuse to buy ebooks at ridiculously high prices. I have stopped buying print books. There’s no logic why ebooks should cost the same as print books. I simply don’t believe the poo these publishers are saying about the cost of infrastructures and such. Completely illogical. The only possible reason is greed.

  7. I used to buy a lot of print books.

    Then I got a first generation Kindle and I bought a lot of ebooks as well as a fair number of print books.

    Now the publishers have angered me so much that I’m not buying any new print books nor any ebooks.

    Hey there big Publishers! Good job alienating your core audience. Good job nailing shut your own coffin.

  8. I used to buy, like, TONS of ebooks, like at least ten or twelve in a year, like I mean a LOT, but then they raised the price five bucks and now I like won’t buy ANY, man, except for the ones I like, and there’s only like ten or twelve of those in a year.

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