Monday, September 26, 2011

25 to 30 million e-ink ereaders in 2011

E-ink is reporting that they'll meet projections for ereaders in 2011.

I found this bit interesting:
But global shipments of e-book readers experienced a seasonal dip in the second-quarter, according to IDC. Shipments reached nearly six million units in first-quarter 2011, but shipments in the second quarter totaled 5.4 million units, up 167% on-year but down 9.2% on-quarter.

Amazon Kindle's market share slid to 51.7% in the second-quarter from about 53% in the first, while Barnes & Noble's Nook dropped to 21.2% from about 23%, according to IDC.

Amazon is barely holding onto half the market. Since they are the most 'indie-friendly' ebookstore, that is bad on one hand... on the other, it is good not to have a market dominance.

I blogged before don't count on keeping the market lead. For example, For the last 3 months in the US Android cell phones have outsold iPhones two to one. I'm surprised to see B&N and Kindle both lost market share. I'm wondering who gained? (Google? Apple? With Boarders going kaput, I doubt it was Kobo and Microsoft dropped their initiative.)

Got Popcorn?

This doesn't include tablets.

The above sales figures show that ereaders sell ok in the 1st and 2nd quarters but are really a back to school and holiday phenomenon. 1H2011 11.4Million out of 25 to 30 million (e-ink). I suspect we'll see another 5 million LCD ereaders in 2011. So the 2nd half of the year is about 2/3rds of the sales. Hence why Amazon is waiting on their new ereaders, tablet, and B&N the rumored new Nook tablet right before the holidays.

I'm big into cell phones as 'convenience readers.' We recently returned from a cruise and for every reader on a Kindle, I saw one on a smartphone, one on a tablet (almost all iPads, a few Samsungs, but not many), and three to five playing games on their cellphones or tablets. :( And for each Kindle reader two reading pbooks. :) Mind you, it was a Disney cruise, so lots of waiting in line. ;)

So only somewhat related, Microsoft's phone strategy baffles me. February is too late for Nokia. B&N showed how it should be done. The nook color October 2010, Nook simple-touch in

updated 12:40pm


  1. I think the e-reader market (at least at this stage) will always be more fragmented than the e-book market.

    Think about it. There are only five or six major corporations with an e-bookstore in the US: Apple, Google, Sony, Kobo (if they count), B&N, and Amazon (and three of those have no significant market share).

    However, there are innumerable major corporations who are producing e-readers and tablets - companies with the ability to invest a lot of marketing dollars too like iRiver, HP, Samsung etc. etc. etc.

    It's only natural that some of those will capture a little bite of the market, with a big campaign behind them, at least in the short term.


    P.S. I just noticed that article refers to GLOBAL e-reader shipments. I would expect Amazon's share globally to be lower. After all, they have only officially launched in a handful of countries, and it's only available in English with a US plug (which doesn't work anywhere else) - even in Germany, strangely.

  2. David,

    You are right... Fragmentation. Then consolidation. As long as the 'software' is available, ereaders will sell.