The percentage of Americans 12 and older who have listened to internet audio in the past week grew by three percentage points to 70%, according to Edison’s most recent statistics. Which is about 200 million people.
The 23-34 age group leads with 89 percent of the market, followed by 35-54 with 85 percent, and 55+ with 53 percent, according to the chart of individuals who have listened to internet audio in the past month. The number of people who have listened to an audiobook in the past year jumped an impressive seven percentage points to 35 percent, roughly 100 million Americans.
The majority of research on the online audio market tends to focus on the music side, leaving audiobooks as the silent partner. It grew much more with CDs, and with the internet and the introduction of streaming technologies in the late 1990s and early 2000s, it really took off. Several of the same questions that The Infinite Dial asks are also included in the annual consumer survey conducted by the Audio Publishing Association. Their main conclusions for 2022 include:
- Since 2017, the total amount of time spent listening to audio (Share of Ear) for audiobooks has increased 106%. Compared to other audio formats, daily audiobook listeners spend the most time listening to books (radio, podcasts, etc.).
- The number of people who subscribe to audiobook services has climbed, with 41% of listeners saying they do so.
- Everyday audiobook listeners listen to audio content for 2+ hours longer each day than the general public (6:34 vs 4:11).
- Up from 44% in 2020, 45% of Americans aged 18 and over have ever listened to an audiobook.