Home Uncategorized One Third of US Consumers Still Buy Music Downloads, Despite Streaming’s Gained Momentum

One Third of US Consumers Still Buy Music Downloads, Despite Streaming’s Gained Momentum



Although music
streaming is getting the biggest headlines these days,
recent research from MusicWatch, a company
providing consumer research for the music industry,
indicates that consumers have not entirely given up on
paid music downloads.
In fact, one third of U.S.
consumers purchased music downloads last year.


Guest Post by Russ Crupnick on MusicWatch Blog

Apple iTunes music download share slipped in
2014, according to MusicWatch

While 7 out of 10 music download buyers shopped at music
download leader iTunes last year, the company also ceded market
share to Amazon
and Google Play. iTunes’s
share of music download revenue in the United States slipped
from 67 percent in 2013 to 52 percent in 2014, while Amazon MP3
rose 2 percentage points and Google Play rose 4 percentage

Share of Dollar Sales: Paid Downloads (tracks and

  2012 2013 2014
iTunes 64% 67% 52%
Amazon MP3 16% 17% 19%
Google Play 6% 7% 11%

Source: MusicWatch, Inc., 2015

According to recently released data from
the Recording Industry Association of America
 paid downloads accounted for 37 percent of
U.S. music revenues, while streaming contributed 27

“As the market leader, Apple bore the brunt of the drop
in download sales, but iTunes still has tens of
millions of loyal, paying music customers
said Russ Crupnick, founder and managing partner of
. “Armed with a strong iOS product lineup and the
potential of Apple Pay, the company is well positioned for its
anticipated music-streaming service re-launch.”

In fact, iTunes music revenue share
among iPhone
users is 71 percent. Even among Android smartphone users,
iTunes garners a 34 percent share, which is higher than Google
Play at 20 percent. At a time when the smartphone is the go-to
device, many Android phone users still use
their computers to buy digital tracks from iTunes.

On the streaming front, MusicWatch estimates that there
are now nearly 130 million music streamers, using both audio-
and video-based services. “If the trends continue through 2015,
streaming could surpass paid downloads as the largest revenue
source for the U.S. music industry,” said Crupnick.

The top services ranked on past three-month usage
are as follows:

  1. YouTube
    (for music listening and music video streaming)
  2. Pandora
  3. Spotify
  4. iHeart
  5. iTunes Radio

Methodology note: The data referenced in this press
release is from the MusicWatch “Profiler Report,” which was
released in March 2015, and from the “Music Acquisition
Monitor” that is scheduled for release in April 2015. The
“Profiler Report” surveys more than 7,000 U.S. consumers, and
the Music Acquisition Monitor samples 5,000 U.S.



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