Over-55s lead e-reader revolution

One in three over-55s owns an e-reader, according to research

18 Jan 2013


Cutting-edge gadgets such as Kindles and Nooks are often associated with young hipsters, but new research shows older folk are more down than most when it comes to the e-reader revolution.


In fact, the over-55s have embraced e-readers more than any other generation - showing stereotypes about older folk and tech are well past their sell-by date. Research from Mintel found one in three over-55s owns an e-reader, showing older people have climbed aboard the digital book revolution en masse.

Plenty of under-55s still own e-readers though, with one in five having bought a Kindle or another similar device. Paul Davies, senior technology analyst at Mintel, said: "Digital books are particularly likely to appeal to seniors who may have problems reading or accessing physical books, due to their ability to enlarge text fonts, simple operation and instant download ability."

But it's not just e-readers quenching older people's thirst for tech. They're also more likely than under-55s to own a TV or a desktop PC, the study found. One area where under-55s come out on top is the smartphone, with nearly three-quarters owning one compared to one in three over-55s.

When it comes to getting the lowdown on the latest gadgets, nearly 40% of over-55s seek out the advice of tech-savvy youngsters. However, more than a tenth of over-55s polled said their tech knowledge was on-par with younger generations.

Davies added: "It is clear that Britain's over-55s are keen to keep up with the nation's younger consumers when it comes to technology. Gradually more and more seniors are becoming regular internet users, connecting from a range of mobile and in-home devices."