iPad and Kindle Reading Speeds (Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox)

Results: Books Faster Than Tablets

The iPad measured at 6.2% lower reading speed
than the printed book, whereas the Kindle10.7%
than print. However, the difference between the two
devices was not statistically significant because of the data’s fairly
high variability.

Thus, the only fair conclusion is that we can’t say for sure
which device offers the fastest reading speed
. In any case, the
difference would be so small that it wouldn’t be a reason to buy one
over the other.

But we can say that tablets still haven’t beaten the printed
: the difference between Kindle and the book was
significant at the p<.01 level, and the difference between
iPad and the book was marginally significant at p=.06.

User Satisfaction: iPad Loved, PCs Hated

After using each device, we asked users to rate their satisfaction on a
1-7 scale, with 7 being the best score.

iPad, Kindle, and the printed book
all scored fairly high at 5.8, 5.7,
and 5.6, respectively. The PC,
however, scored an abysmal 3.6.

Most of the users’ free-form comments were predictable. For example,
they disliked that the iPad was so heavy and that the Kindle featured
less-crisp gray-on-gray letters. People also disliked the lack of true
pagination and preferred the way the iPad (actually, the iBook app)
indicated the amount of text left in a chapter.

Less predictable comments: Users felt that reading the printed book was
more relaxing than using electronic devices. And they felt uncomfortable
with the PC because it reminded them of work. —Jakob Neilsen

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