A: Seattle, Washington, United States
During the months of April, May, and June 2010 sales of ebooks (e-books) exceeded sales of hardcover physical books at Amazon.com. "In that time Amazon said, it sold 143 Kindle books for every 100 hardcover books, including hardcovers for which there is no Kindle edition."
The New York Times online, which reported this information, did not compare Amazon's sales of e-books versus their sales of paperback books during the same period, but indicated that "paperback sales are thought to still outnumber e-books."
"Book lovers mourning the demise of hardcover books with their heft and their musty smell need a reality check, said Mike Shatzkin, founder and chief executive of the Idea Logical Company, which advises book publishers on digital change. 'This was a day that was going to come, a day that had to come,' he said. He predicts that within a decade, fewer than 25 percent of all books sold will be print versions.
"Still, the hardcover book is far from extinct. Industrywide sales are up 22 percent this year, according to the American Publishers Association."
The shift at Amazon is "astonishing when you consider that we’ve been selling hardcover books for 15 years, and Kindle books for 33 months," Amazon's chief executive, Jeffrey P. Bezos, said in a news release, published in Amazon.com's Media Room.