Study Finds Disparity Between Consumer, Publisher Expectations for Digital Adoption
Goodman cited a portion of the study showing eye fatigue and battery life are common complaints among device-owning consumers, and finding that users desire, in descending order, devices featuring high-resolution screens, substantial storage, readability in the dark, video and multimedia, access to the Internet at any time, an easy-to-use touchscreen, and lightweight design.
Taylor said publishers often miss the mark in identifying consumers' true motivations and barriers to digital adoption. For instance, while 67 percent of publishers believed "it isn't as enriching as holding the actual paper publication in my hand" would be a barrier to device adoption, only 25 percent of consumers did. Similarly, 63 percent of publishers believed emotional attachment to the printed word would be cited, while only 18 percent of consumers actually agreed with this. Fifty-eight percent of publishers believe consumers feel they "don't need another portable electronic device in my life"; only 20 percent of consumers thought so.
On the other hand, "[It's] not the death of print," Taylor said. "[It's] a little more like radio giving way to television. We find people who adopt the devices are reading more newspapers, magazines and books after acquiring the devices compared to non device users."
The main message for publishers, Taylor said in the statement, is that consumers will demand flexibility and openness with their content, "on all devices, all platforms, varying screen sizes, synced between devices, to be shared among friends socially, paid for in micro-payments and accessed via a mobile app."
Publishers currently are "at arm's length from consumer motives," read a webinar powerpoint slide. "Consumers," it warns, "drive the future."