The Kindle to Save the Elderly .. and the Newspaper Industry


Anecdotal evidence seems to suggest that Amazon’s Kindle is appealing, perhaps counterintuitively, to an older generation. According to Marginal Revolution, “over half of reporting Kindle owners are 50 or older, and 70 percent are 40 or older.” Why is the Kindle skewing toward a more senior demographic? At least one reason is that it allows older folks to navigate around various physical disabilities, ranging from visual problems to arthritis to carpal tunnel syndrome. If you have bad eye sight, then you can expand the Kindle’s fonts and you’re good to go.

In the meantime, on a different front, The New York Times is reporting today that newspaper publishers may be hoping that the Kindle can save their industry. Instead of distributing free content via the web, papers may be looking to circulate content through big screen e-book readers on a subscription basis. Charge a fee + eliminate printing costs =  back in business. That’s the thinking.

via Andrew Sullivan’s Daily Dish


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Comments (4)
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  • Will Kindle be a savior for newspapers? Maybe so. Kindle might be the product to finally get newspapers to realize they have to go digital. Read more at

  • Carol A says:

    Could it be that more older people read books? I would love a reader (and am over 50) but will wait for the cheaper models to come out later this year (Bebook etc). Also don’t like DRM’d formats.

  • bob schulties says:

    Hang on, Carol A… You are over 50 and know about DRM. AND you don’t like it? Yay for informed people.

    Sorry for sarcastic-sounding comment… but anytime folks are actually aware of DRM I get excited. Go, Carol A! :)

    I am waiting for the industry get its collective arse together and get a common format so that we can, sooner than later, have several readers to choose from and can buy books from wherever.

    And they better be cheap. $2 – $3 book will get sales going. And maybe, just maybe, The Times at $10/month would be palatable. But it needs to update more than once a day.

    The industry needs to take advantage of the technology.

    And they better get it together before Apple gets this all sussed out and owns the book world like they mostly do for the music.

    Anyway, I’m mostly commented because Carol A rocks.

  • Alex Levy says:

    As a subscriber to the paper edition of the NY Times, I hate the idea of having to pay again to have it on my Kindle. What is more, Kindle, while it can provide larger print and audio, which is appreciated by older folk (I’m 73), should work at providing a white, rather than a grey, background for its black text. Insufficient contrast makes it difficult to read indoors.

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