100 Million Fewer Downloads Have Been Sold In 2015

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The year-to-date drop was precisely 92.2 million song downloads as of September 31st, according to stats released today by Nielsen for the first three quarters of 2015.  At this rate, the yearly gap will sprawl to at least 120 million songs by the end of the year.  Incidentally, packaged album downloads remained fairly steady, though the real picture is happening on the streaming side.

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Meanwhile, paid subscriptions appear flat, according to first-half 2015 figures, and it’s unclear whether those numbers improved over the summer.

More as further statistics come in.


6 Responses

  1. Remi Swierczek

    Total for global Radio & TV for same period was much more than 10 trillion! ( 10,000 billion)
    Play the best, then hope for one out of 100 tunes to be monetized as an addition to personal playlist.

    THE RESULT: $39B dollar industry at just 39 cents/tune. Treat October thru December activity as a bonus.

  2. Name2

    Okay, I actually read the article. (one must, on DMN).

    Actual non-bundled number is (-92.20 million). If one is rounding to get a “headline number”, and if I recall my 3rd grade math correctly, that number should be 90 million. Nonetheless, it’s a big number: 10 percent.

    Hey! Look what else is off 10 percent:

    Overall, the CD was down 10 percent, moving 82.6 million.

    Things that make you go “Hmmmmm…. why isn’t THIS a DMN headline??”

    Conversely, digital album sales are holding their own, down less than one-third of 1 percent.

    In the face of streaming, cratering physical sales, and cratering single digital sales, album downloads are down less than one-third of one percent. You’d think there’d be an opportunity there to look at why that might be and what opportunities it affords, who’s buying what where, and what people think about actually putting single downloads in their carts.

    Or, you know, you could just scream “Kill teh Googel!!!!~11!@!” over and over and over.

  3. Anonymous

    I must be missing something here… but is that all? Really? For simplicity sake, let’s say 100 million downloads is ~$100 million. 1 million streaming customers = $120 million per year. Apple has added over 3 million so far this year. Spotify is going to add at least that. 100 million downloads to gain several million streaming customers seems to be a tremendous gain.

    • Anonymous

      A streaming customer is only worth $120 per year if they subscribe the whole year, and pay the full $10 monthly rate.

      It’s a bit early to say Apple has added 3 million subscribers collectively worth (based on your numbers) $360 million.

      • Name2

        if the industry is allowed to bundle 12 digital sales into an “album equivalent”, why not bundle 12 one-monthers (or 12 didn’t-cancel-in-timers) into one annual subscriber?

        Hairs are being split here. Perhaps going forward, “paid listener months” would be a useful thing to track as opposed to number of “subscribers”.

  4. Rick Shaw

    Stands to reason as most people already have the music they want, and new music is mostly not so good.