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Amazon: Digital Books Surpass Print Sales

October 26, 2010

Online retail giant Amazon said Monday that customers are buying digital versions of the top 10 best-selling books for the Kindle e-reader more than twice as often as print copies.

“Kindle books are also outselling print books for the top 25, 100, and 1,000 bestsellers — it’s across the board,” said senior VP of Amazon Kindle, Steve Kessel. “This is remarkable when you consider that we’ve been selling hardcover and paperback books for 15 years, and Kindle books for just 36 months.”

Amazon said back in July that e-books for the Kindle have topped hardcover book sales.

Kessel said: “customers are choosing Kindle books over hardcover and paperback books combined at a rate of greater than two to one,” referring to the top 10 best-selling books on Amazon.

Amazon also said it has sold three times as many e-books in the first nine months of 2010 than it did in the first nine months of 2009.

“It’s still October and we’ve already sold more Kindle devices since launch than we did during the entire fourth quarter of last year — astonishing because the fourth quarter is the busiest time of year on Amazon,” Kessel said in a statement.

He said it is evident that “this is going to be the biggest holiday for Kindle yet by far.”

Amazon in July unveiled two new versions of its Kindle e-reader, including its lowest priced version yet: $139.

Amazon slashed Kindle prices and revamped the line to gear up for the growing threat from other e-readers on the market, including Apple’s iPad.

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