October 25, 2011

The Tablet Revolution

Who Pays for News on the Tablet

As previously mentioned, being free or low cost is one of the strongest factors in the decision to download an app-83% of those with news apps say this was a major factor in their decision to download. And at this point just a small minority, 14% of tablet news users, has paid anything for news on their tablet. Still, this small cohort is the group that most news organizations would like to know and expand on. Who are they and do they value news content on their tablet differently than those who have not paid for it? Many of the tendencies seen among those who mainly use apps are amplified even more among this small group that has chosen to pay for their content.

The vast majority of those who have paid for news content on their tablet (86%) get news on their tablet daily; 42% spend more time with news now than they did before they had their tablet (versus 30% of all news users). They are even deeper readers than app users. More than two-thirds prefer to go more in depth into individual news stories rather than just get headlines and they already largely turn to the Web for their national and international news (83% mostly turn to the internet for this news).

Whether they feel the need to justify their spending or truly value their investments, those who have paid say they are getting something for their money. Nearly two-thirds, 63%, of those who have paid for news on the tablet say it is easier to learn (compared with just a third, 34%, of those who have not paid). Close to half (48%) enjoy the news more on their tablet versus 28% of those who have not paid. And a third, 34%, say the news is worth more to them on their tablet (versus 13% of those who have not yet paid).

Those who have paid are more likely than news users overall to be male (69% among those who have paid versus 52% of those who have not paid). They are more highly educated (68% have a college education compared with 54% of those who have not paid.

Those who have paid for news are less likely than browser users to be conservative, 20% versus 30% of those who have not paid, 38% of those who have paid describe themselves as liberal as do 29% of those who have not paid). Finally, this cohort seems to have more money to spend-fully 60% of those who have paid something for news have household income of at least $100,000 compared with 45% of tablet news users overall.

Cite this publication: Pew Research Center’s Journalism Project Staff. “The Tablet Revolution.” Pew Research Center, Washington, D.C. (October 25, 2011) http://www.journalism.org/2011/10/25/tablet/, accessed on July 23, 2014.