Have You Read a Good Audio Book Recording Lately?
Audio book recordings have revolutionized the way America reads. Today’s reader is so busy with family, work, and other commitments to sit down and devote 100 per cent of his or her attention to reading a book. Because of the popularity of audio book recordings, sitting down to read a book, one page at a time, is an activity that may become obsolete in the near future.
Unlike traditional bound books with paper pages, a reader can listen to an audio book almost anywhere. Audio books make great companions while a reader is cooking, exercising or driving. In fact, the number one place people listen to audio book recordings is in their cars.
Varied Formats Appeal to a Diverse Readership
Audio book recordings come in a variety of formats to suit different kinds of readers. Some audio book recordings are available in cassette tape format, but this format has declined in sales since the early 2000s. Eventually, cassette tape recordings will become as hard to find as their predecessor, the reel-to-reel tape.
Recordings in CD format have enjoyed popularity recently, and they remain the most popular audio book format. Audio book recordings on CD can be purchased or borrowed through an audio book subscription service or a public library.
The newest format for audio book recordings is the mp3 file. The mp3 audio book recording can be downloaded to a hard drive and played with Windows Media Player, Quicktime, Real Player, or other file-playing software. An mp3 audio book recording file can also be downloaded to a portable device that interfaces with a car stereo, portable stereo, or headphone or ear bud speaker system.
Growth of the Audio Book Market
Surveys report that one in five American households listened to an audio book recording within the last year, and that 71 per cent of audio book readers listen to books on long car trips. Readers’ favorite audio book genre is mystery, horror, or suspense. A typical audio book listener earns 25 per cent more than a reader of conventional books; studies show that audio book listeners tend to be more educated than traditional book readers, and they are more likely to hold managerial or professional positions with their employers.
Sales of downloadable audio book recordings have soared in the last four years, and this sector of the industry is expected to continue to grow as more and more consumers become comfortable downloading files and storing them on mp3 players.