Money Matters - Simplified

Reading e-books takes more time than reading paper books--study

Nielsen gave each participant the task of reading different short stories by Ernest Hemingway on all four platforms and then he measured their reading speeds and their understanding of what they read.

According to a new study report, reading a book on any electronic devices whether it’s Kindle or iPad, takes longer time than reading the standard paper version of the same book.

The study has been conducted by Jakob Nielsen of Nielsen of the Nielson Norman Group.

For the study Nielsen compared four popular e-book devices used these days. These included the PC, the iBooks application, the Kindle 2, and iPad.

The study revealed that reading a book on e-reader takes more time as readers reading capabilities are 10.7 percent slower compared to reading a traditional paper version.

Details of Neilsen’s study
Nielsen chose 24 users who “liked reading and frequently read books” on their electronic devices.

The new study might have showed that reading book on electronic devices is slower experience than reading paperback. However, market experts believe that this study would hardly affect the sale or the demand of e-readers.

Nielsen gave each participant the task of reading different short stories by Ernest Hemingway on all four platforms and then he measured their reading speeds and their understanding of what they read.

As per study, iPad users were 6.2 percent and Kindle 2 users were 10.7 percent slower than those reading the standard paperback version.

However, in a statement Nielsen dismissed the rumors that his study is more in favor of Apple’s iPad.

"The difference [between reading times on the iPad and Kindle 2] would be so small that it wouldn't be a reason to buy one over the other," said Nielsen.

Later, all 24 participants were also asked to rate their reading experience on devices they used; rating each device out of seven. Interestingly, iPad, iBook and Kindle all were rated much the same at 5.8, 5.6 and 5.7 respectively.

However, PC did not fare well with its score of 3.6 and earned the label of worst reading experience provided.

E-reader demand high
The new study might have showed that reading book on electronic devices is slower experience than reading paperback. However, market experts believe that this study would hardly affect the sale or the demand of e-readers.

Just recently, Consumer Reports reported that after the emergence of Apple’s iPad on the market scene, e-reader war has heated up as all other companies in order to keep up with iPad are reducing their devices prices to lure customers.

"Barnes and Noble Nook dropped their price to $199. A few hours later, Amazon Kindle, the best selling e-book readers, dropped its price to $189. Part of what these devices are trying to do is to create interest by emphasizing even more how much cheaper they are than an iPad. An iPad starts at $499," explained Paul Reynolds of Consumer Reports.