Paid music downloads suspected to die off by 2021
It is impossible to ignore the digital empire that streaming platforms such as SoundCloud, Spotify, Pandora, and Apple Music have built within the past six years. Spotify, for example, boasts a growing 75 million active user base, with 15 million paid subscribers.
According to Nielsen Soundscan, a music sales measurement tool, paid song downloads plummeted 12.5% last year, and have dropped a full 23.4% across the last two years. For the first time since 2007, paid downloads via iTunes and Amazon dipped below the one-billion mark.
The Golden Age of paid downloads is quickly coming to an end. As Nielsen predicts, by 2019, sales will drop an additional 40%. But as the pay-per-download sales model meets its death by what is predicted to be 2021, music streaming will only continue to amplify. In 2015, total music streams skyrocketed from the previous year’s 164.5 million to 317.2 million.
What, then, does this mean for the future of artists and their respective labels? Simply put, record labels will hurt the most when streaming finally does outlive the paid download generation, whose value is 140 times the revenue of one stream. In the end, it will be fans — not the artists — who receive the largest benefit from the enhanced accessibility of music.
Via: Digital Music News