Audiobooks Statistics By Region, Revenue, Genre, Habits, Listening Hours, Country, Facts And Trends

Ketaki Joshi
Written by
Ketaki Joshi

Updated · Jun 20, 2024

Aruna Madrekar
Edited by
Aruna Madrekar

Editor

Audiobooks Statistics By Region, Revenue, Genre, Habits, Listening Hours, Country, Facts And Trends

Introduction

Audiobooks Statistics: Gone are the days of boring audiobooks! Now, thanks to cool new tech, books can come alive in your ears like never before. Instead of just hearing someone read, these new audiobooks can change their voice to fit the story. A scary adventure might have a suspenseful whisper, while a love story feels sweet and close.

Listen to exciting books without needing a screen, and even get things done at work all at the same time! We’ll delve into the latest Audiobook Statistics, uncovering the fascinating trends that illuminate listener preferences and the booming industry’s trajectory.

Editor’s Choice

  • 70% of users in the USA prefer to have access to podcasts, audiobooks, and music as one service.
  • According to a publication by Deloitte Insights 2024, as of 2024, around 270 million people are projected to listen to audiobooks on average per month.
  • The United States of America is the largest market for the audiobook segment. In 2024, audiobook sales are expected to exceed e-book sales, amounting to 10% of total book revenue.
  • Considering AI technology, 33% of book lovers would prefer human-narrated audiobooks.
  • In worldwide comparison, the United States of America is projected to generate most of the revenue, contributing US $3,408.00 million in 2024.
  • In 2023, subscriptions generated 53.01% of the revenue in the worldwide audiobook market. Downloaded audiobooks and physical CDs contributed 42.16% and 4.83%, respectively.
  • According to an Audiobook listening trends report by Voices, the majority of listeners listen to audiobooks at least 1 to 4 hours a week (50%).
  • 59% of the audiobook listeners stopped in between because they didn’t like the narrator’s way of reading the book.
  • 30% of audiobook listeners are likely to prefer audiobooks over reading because they provide an extraordinary experience.
  • Audiobooks Statistics 2024 estimates that revenue in the worldwide market will reach 7.93 billion US dollars in the current year.

General Audiobooks Statistics

  • According to a publication by Deloitte Insights 2024, as of 2024, around 270 million people are projected to listen to audiobooks on average per month.
  • Furthermore, the listenership is projected to increase by 15% year-over-year.
  • In the similar Deloitte’s publication projections, in the current year, the worldwide audiobook sale will contribute around 6% to the total book sales.
  • The United States of America is the largest market for the audiobook segment. In 2024, audiobook sales are expected to exceed e-book sales, amounting to 10% of total book revenue.
  • 70% of users in the USA prefer to have access to podcasts, audiobooks, and music as one service.
  • It costs around $5,000 to produce an audiobook, which is, on average, 10 hours long.
  • As of 2023, more than half of American adults listened to audiobooks.
  • The non-fiction audiobook category is projected to be the fastest-growing category due to educational and genre diversity.
  • Furthermore, smartphones are the most popular devices, and they are preferred by most audiobook lovers.
  • Audiobooks Statistics estimate that the adult audiobook category will experience a dominant market share in the coming years.
  • On average, a narrator is likely to speak approximately 155 words per 60 seconds.

By Region

Worldwide

  • Audiobooks Statistics 2024 estimates that revenue in the worldwide market will reach 7.93 billion US dollars in the current year.
  • The average revenue per person is predicted to amount to US$5.46.
  • In worldwide comparison, the United States of America is projected to generate most of the revenue, contributing US$3,408.00 million in 2024.
  • The user penetration rate, currently 18.7%, is expected to increase to 21.7% by 2029.
  • The worldwide audiobook market is forecasted to grow at an annual rate of 10.44%, reaching US$13.03 billion by 2029.

Worldwide Audiobook Revenue Change

Audiobooks Revenue Change In The Worldwide Market(Reference: statista.com)

Audiobooks Statistics show that revenue in the audiobook industry worldwide is currently experiencing significant growth. After COVID-19, the growth boosted like a rocket and is expected to grow more by the forecast period.

Revenue By Channel

Revenue By Channel(Reference: statista.com)

In 2023, subscriptions generated 53.01% of the revenue in the worldwide audiobook market. Downloaded audiobooks and physical CDs contributed 42.16% and 4.83%, respectively.

Listeners By Genre

Listeners By Genre(Reference: statista.com)

Among worldwide audiobook listeners, Humor/Comedy (10.92%) is the most popular genre. Furthermore, listeners also prefer historical fiction, history, and fantasy/ science fiction/dystopian prominently.

Americas

  • The revenue of the American audiobook industry is expected to amount to 3.78 billion US dollars by 2024.
  • Furthermore, the market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 10.58% between 2024 and 2029, reaching US$6.25 billion by 2029.
  • Audiobook Statistics projects the user penetration rate to be 21.3% in 2024 and hit 23.9% by the forecast period.
  • The ARPU – average revenue per user is anticipated to amount to US$17.40.
  • By the forecast period, the number of readers is projected to hit 250.2 million.

Asia

  • The Asian Audiobook market 2024 is forecasted to generate a revenue of US$2.25 billion.
  • By the forecasted period, user penetration is expected to reach 24.2%, while, as of today, it is 20.6%.
  • The average revenue per user is expected to amount to US$2.40.
  • Furthermore, by 2029, the number of readers is projected to reach 1.1 billion.

Africa

  • In 2024, the African audiobooks market is expected to generate 87.95 million USD in revenue.
  • By 2029, the expected number of readers in the market is 123.9 million.
  • In addition, user penetration is expected to be 7.0% in 2024 and 8.6% by 2029.
  • Revenue in the African market is estimated to grow at an annual rate of 11.61%, reaching $152.30 million by the forecast period.

Australia And Oceania

  • The Australia and Oceania market in 2024 is expected to generate US$292.40 million in revenue.
  • Furthermore, Audiobooks Statistics estimates that it will grow at an annual growth rate of 10.53%, leading to $482.30 million by the forecast year.
  • The average revenue per user is expected to amount to $25.45, while the estimated number of audiobook listeners will be 14.9 million by 2029.
  • By 2029, it is estimated that the user penetration rate will be 32.5%.

Europe

  • The audiobook market in Europe is estimated to reach 1.52 billion US dollars in 2024.
  • The number of users in the European market is projected to reach 228.7 million by 2029.
  • In addition, by the forecast period, the user penetration is estimated to be 27.1%.
  • As of today, the user penetration rate is 23.1%.
  • The ARPU is projected at US$7.77.

By Habits

  • Audiobooks Statistics 2023 reported that the majority of the listeners prefer to listen during the commute.
  • In addition, 54% like to listen while doing household chores.
  • For 44% of audiobook listeners, a relaxing time is the best time to listen to books.
  • 56% of the users prefer fiction over non-fiction audiobooks.
  • 59% of the audiobook listeners stopped in between because they didn’t like the narrator’s way of reading the book.
  • 64% of the listeners say they believe in high-quality book narration.
  • 30% of audiobook listeners are likely to prefer audiobooks over reading because they provide an extraordinary experience.
  • Considering AI technology, 33% of book lovers would prefer human-narrated audiobooks.

By Listening Hours

Audiobook Listening Per Week(Source: static.voices.com)

According to an Audiobook listening trends report by Voices, the majority of listeners listen to audiobooks at least 1 to 4 hours a week (50%). Some heavy listeners listen for more than 11 hours. At least one-third of them listen 5 to 10 hours per week.

Audiobook Buyer Share in Selected Countries

Although audiobook statistics estimate the USA to be the largest market, in 2024, listeners in Nigeria purchased more audiobooks than in any other country. The following chart explains the share of Audiobook purchasers in selected countries in 2024.

Country

Share of Audiobook buyers
Nigeria

44%

India

29%
Vietnam

36%

China

35%
Kenya

32%

Saudi Arabia

30%
South Africa

29%

Indonesia

27%
United Arab Emirates

27%

Egypt

26%
Hong Kong

26%

Hong Kong

25%
Sweden

24%

Singapore

23%
Norway

22%

Pakistan

22%
Thailand

22%

United States

22%
Philippines 

21%

Peru

21%
Denmark

20%

Mexico

20%
United Kingdom

20%

Turkey

20%
Germany

19%

Colombia

19%
Australia

19%

Brazil

19%
Poland

19%

Finland

18%
Switzerland

18%

Israel

18%
New Zealand

17%

Dominican Republic

16%
Ireland

15%

Canada

15%
Italy

14%

Malaysia

14%
Russia

14%

Morocco

14%
South Korea

14%

Spain

13%
Romania

13%

Austria

13%
Argentina

13%

Chile

13%
France

12%

Taiwan

11%
Netherlands

11%

Belgium

11%
Greece

10%

Lithuania

8%
Hungary

8%

Czechia

8%
Serbia

6%

Portugal

5%
Japan

5%

(Source: statista.com)

Most Popular ePublishing Products in the USA

Most Purchased ePublishing Products In The U.S. As Of December 2023(Reference: statista.com)

According to the Statista survey, in the USA, audiobooks were the most purchased ePublishing products with 22% of votes. Podcasts, eBooks, emagazines, and online news websites ranked respectively with more or less than 20% each.

By Total Audiobooks Per Month

Audiobooks Statistics by total audiobooks per month(Source: greatworklife.com)

Audiobooks Statistics show that most audiobook listeners listen to at least two to three books every month. On average, 54% listen to 1 to 8 books, and 11% say they listen to more than 7 books. Overall, 61% of the users are avid audiobook listeners.

US Amazon Prime Day Planned Purchases

Share Of Shoppers Planning To Purchase On Amazon Prime Day In The United States In 2023, By Product Category(Reference: statista.com)

During US Amazon Prime Day 2023, books, e-books, and audiobooks were one of the leading planned purchases. The top choice among Americans was the aggregate electronic category.

By Country

Japan

Leading Audiobook And e-Book Apps In Japan By Revenue

Leading Audiobook And e-Book Apps In Japan In 2023, Based On Downloads(Reference: statista.com)

As of 2023, Audible was the leading audiobook and e-book app in Japan by downloads, with US$4,757.12 thousand in terms of app revenue. Furthermore, audiobooks Everand, Mimicle, Dedao, fonos, headway, galatea, and Pocket FM were ranked respectively.

Hungary

Share Of Audiobook Listeners In Hungary By Usage Intensity

Distribution Of Audiobook Listeners In Hungary In 2023, By Usage Intensity(Reference: statista.com)

About Audiobooks Statistics 2023, 84% of the population in Hungary are non-users of audiobooks. Around 14% are light listeners, while only 2% heavily depend on audiobook listening.

Portugal

In 2023, Audible was the leading eBook and Audiobook application on the most downloaded list.

eBooks and Audiobook applicationsNumber of downloads in thousands (in 1,000s)
Audible15.34
Headway8.52
Blinkist6.41
Kobo Books4.68
Google Play Books and Audiobooks3.7
Palace of Versailles2.01
Scribd1.59
12min1.14

Audiobook Facts

  • Market Value: In 2023, the global audiobook market was valued at approximately USD 5.3 billion. Projections indicate continued growth into 2024.
  • Demographics: A significant portion of audiobook listeners are young adults and busy professionals. These groups are attracted to audiobooks due to their convenience and ability to fit into multitasking lifestyles.
  • Formats: Audiobooks are offered in various formats, with downloads and streaming being the most popular. CD formats are declining in popularity due to the rise of digital platforms.
  • Genre Popularity: The most popular genres in 2023 were fiction, self-help, and business. Fiction accounted for the largest share, with over 40% of total audiobook consumption.

Industry Trends Worldwide

  • Market Expansion: The audiobook market is expanding globally, with North America holding the largest market share. In 2023, North America accounted for 45% of the global market, while Europe and Asia-Pacific regions saw growth rates of 25% and 30%, respectively.
  • Subscription Services: Subscription services such as Audible and Storytel dominate the market. In 2023, these services had a combined market share of approximately 60%. Subscriptions are popular because they offer users unlimited access to a vast library of audiobooks for a monthly fee.
  • Technology Integration: The use of smart speakers and mobile apps has significantly increased audiobook consumption. In 2023, over 55% of audiobook listeners used smart speakers to enjoy their content.
  • Original Content: Companies are investing in original content to attract new users. In 2023, original audiobooks and podcasts constituted 20% of the available content on major platforms.
  • Language Diversity: There is a growing demand for audiobooks in multiple languages. In 2023, non-English audiobooks accounted for 35% of the global market, indicating a significant rise in non-English-speaking countries.

Factors Influencing Audiobook Listener Preferences

  • Convenience: Listeners’ ability to multitask while listening to audiobooks is a major draw. In 2023, 70% of users cited convenience as their primary reason for choosing audiobooks.
  • Narration Quality: High-quality narration is crucial. In a 2023 survey, 65% of respondents stated that the narrator’s performance greatly influenced their enjoyment of an audiobook.
  • Content Variety: Access to a diverse range of genres and titles is important. In 2023, 60% of listeners preferred platforms that offered a wide selection of content.
  • Price and Accessibility: Affordable pricing and easy access through digital platforms are key factors. In 2023, 75% of listeners favored subscription models, which provide value for money.
  • Recommendations and Reviews: Friends’ recommendations and positive online reviews play a significant role in influencing listener choices. In 2023, 50% of new audiobook users reported discovering content through recommendations.

2023 And 2024 Data Analysis

  • 2023: The global audiobook market was valued at USD 5.3 billion. North America maintained the largest market share at 45%, while Europe and Asia-Pacific saw notable growth.
  • 2024 Projections*: The market is expected to continue its upward trajectory. With advancements in technology and an increase in diverse content offerings, the market is projected to grow by 20%, reaching approximately USD 6.36 billion by the end of 2024.

Conclusion

The audiobook industry is experiencing rapid growth, driven by the convenience of digital formats, technological advancements, and a wide variety of content. Subscription services and original content production are key trends shaping the market.

Listener preferences are influenced by factors such as narration quality, content variety, and pricing. As the market expands globally, particularly in Europe and Asia-Pacific, the industry is poised for continued success in 2024 and beyond.

FAQ.

Can I listen to Audiobooks for free?

Yes. Audible and other similar platforms offer free audiobooks to listen to.

Which audiobook app is best?

Audible is the best app for audiobooks. It offers a diverse range of experiences.

Is Audible free with Amazon Prime membership?

No. Users need to pay subscription charges.

Ketaki Joshi
Ketaki Joshi

Ketaki Joshi is a professional medical writer with extensive experience in scientific research on illness, health, and healthcare. Her work includes creating feature articles for newsletters and websites, as well as research news stories for doctors and researchers. With a lifelong passion for reading, Ketaki transitioned from a career at a French multinational company to pursue writing professionally. Her dedication to the craft has culminated in the recent release of her first Amazon-published short story, "The Envelope That Changed Our Lives."

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