Amazon says it is selling more Kindle books than print books

19 May 2011

E-commerce giant Amazon has revealed that it is now selling more Kindle books than e-books – with 105 Kindle e-books selling for every 100 printbooks.

This includes sales of hardcover and paperback books by Amazon where there is no Kindle edition. Free Kindle books are excluded and if included would make the number even higher.

Amazon sold more than 3-times as many Kindle books so far in 2011 as it did during the same period in 2010.

Less than one year after introducing the UK Kindle Store, is now selling more Kindle books than hardcover books, even as hardcover sales continue to grow.

Since April 1, customers are purchasing Kindle books over hardcover books at a rate of more than 2 to 1.

The slow death of print?

“Customers are now choosing Kindle books more often than print books,” Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos explained.

“We had high hopes that this would happen eventually, but we never imagined it would happen this quickly – we’ve been selling print books for 15 years and Kindle books for less than four years,” Bezos added.

So far in 2011, the tremendous growth of Kindle book sales, combined with the continued growth in Amazon’s print book sales, have resulted in the fastest year-over-year growth rate for Amazon’s US books business, in both units and dollars, in over 10 years, the company said.

This includes books in all formats, print and digital. Free books are excluded in the calculation of growth rates.

In the five weeks since its introduction, Kindle with Special Offers for US$114 is already the bestselling member of the Kindle family in the US.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years