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The number of Americans owning a tablet computer or e-reader nearly doubled over the holidays as Kindles, Nooks and iPads proved to be popular gifts, a new study found.

In early January, 19 percent of Americans surveyed owned an e-reader, up from 10 percent in December, with identical results for tablets, according to a report released on Monday by the Pew Internet and American Life Project.

As a result, the percentage of Americans owning at least one digital reading device rose to 29 percent in January from 18 percent, according to the survey. Inc. and Barnes & Noble Inc. each introduced new tablets and cheaper versions of their Kindle and Nook devices, respectively, ahead of the holidays, while Apple Inc.'s iPad continued to be popular.

The report also found that men and women were equally likely to own a device but that ownership was more likely among people of higher education and higher income.

The figures are from several surveys conducted by Pew. The first, pre-Christmas survey of 2,986 Americans 16 and older was conducted in November and December, while the second and third surveyed about 2,000 adults in January.