Pew Internet
More than half of Americans who regularly read news get it on handheld digital devices, according to new research. The Pew Internet & American Life Project found 54 percent of news-reading adults turn to cell phones, tablets or e-readers (question 23). There's good news for writers: "41% of tablet owners and 35% of e-reader owners said they were reading more since the advent of e-content."

The main focus of the Pew survey was on e-books and how Americans are embracing them. A few interesting facts:

  • One-fifth read e-books. 21 percent of all American adults said they had read an e-book in the past year.
  • The prototypical e-reading person. The most-typical e-reader owner is a woman, 30 to 49 years old, who graduated from college and has a household income exceeding $75,000.
  • E-book readers pay. Only 48 percent of people had purchased the most recent printed book they read; the majority had borrowed it or acquired it some other way. But a higher number, 64 percent, had paid for their most recent e-book.
  • Pros and cons. Readers prefer e-books over print books because of efficient purchasing, ease of use while traveling and having a wide selection. But they prefer print books for reading with a child and for the ability to share them with others.

Related: Four more takeaways from the Pew study (paidContent) |Clay Shirky on the future of e-books and social reading (Findings.com) | Morgan Guenther on the future of magazines on tablets (Wired) || Earlier: Direct publishing of e-books offers hope for long-form journalists (Poynter) In the year of the e-book, 5 lessons for news organizations (Poynter).