Amazon on Thursday said ebooks, or Kindle books, have begun outselling print books for the first time in the company’s history.
The Web retailer stated in a news release that for every 100 print books sold on Amazon.com since April 1, the company has sold 105 Kindle books. These figures include sales of hardcover and paperbacks for which no Kindle edition is available. The company did not include free ebooks in those statistics but said the inclusion of free ebook downloads would push the ratio even more in favor of the Kindle books.
"Customers are now choosing Kindle books more often than print books," said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com. “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."
Amazon began selling Kindle books in November 2007. The Kindle ebooks began outselling hardcover books on Amazon.com in July 2010. Six months later, Kindle ebooks overtook paperback sales as well.
Now, Amazon said it is selling more ebooks than hardcover and paperback books — combined.
The trend does not appear to be slowing down any time soon. Amazon said it sold three times as many ebooks so far in 2011 compared to the same time period in 2010.