Home Tech Online music sales drop for first time since 2003

Online music sales drop for first time since 2003

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That was the year that the iTunes Music store revolutionized digital music, but as the number of music streaming and internet radio services continues to grow, is a second digital music revolution on the horizon?

The latest quarterly Nielsen SoundScan report shows that sales of individual digital music tracks in the US fell 5.7% from 1.24 billion to 1.26 billion and sales of whole albums (usually more robust and less likely to fluctuate) also fell by 0.1%.

According to Billboard, the music industry believes that this drop in sales is due to the growing popularity of streaming, which is starting to slowly cannibalize digital sales, and the trend is set to continue into the new year.

YouTube is getting ready to launch a music and music video streaming service and Apple is widely expected to expand its iTunes Radio offering beyond the US in 2014.

Despite legitimizing digital music, and stealing a very large proportion of the music sales market in the process, the iTunes Store is by no means the most popular way for US consumers to buy music.

Smartphones and tablets may well be bordering on ubiquity, but the CD still accounts for 57.2% of US album sales, compared with 40.6% for digital downloads from all legal sources.

Source: Yahoo News

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