Streaming Music Contributed 75% of Total U.S. Music Industry Revenues for 2018

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Feb 28, 2019.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Streaming music services like Apple Music, Spotify, Google Play Music, Pandora, and others are continuing to grow in popularity and in 2018, were responsible for 75 percent of total U.S. music industry revenues, according to a new year-end music industry report released today by the RIAA. [PDF]

    Revenue from streaming platforms grew 30 percent year over year and hit $7.4 billion. Total music industry revenue for 2018 was at $9.8 billion, up from $8.8 billion in 2017 and $7.6 billion in 2016.

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    Digital downloads from storefronts like iTunes made up 11 percent of total revenue in 2018, and physical sales of records and CDs made up 12 percent. Digital downloads fell for the sixth consecutive year and were eclipsed by physical sales, which were also down, with the exception of vinyl record sales (up 8%).

    Paid on-demand subscription services like Apple Music were responsible for much of the music industry's revenue growth, with ad-supported services and customized radio services making up a smaller portion of the growth.

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    Overall subscription revenues increased a total of 32 percent from 2017 to 2018, totaling $5.4 billion, thanks to 42 percent growth in the average number of paid subscriptions.

    The RIAA does not break down revenue by subscription music service, but at last count, Apple Music had 50 million paying subscribers, while Spotify had 87 million.

    Article Link: Streaming Music Contributed 75% of Total U.S. Music Industry Revenues for 2018
     
  2. keysofanxiety macrumors G3

    keysofanxiety

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    Oh wow. A decade ago this would have been unthinkable. Even 5 years ago.

    Yes, we’ll inevitably have the comments about “I like to keep my music local”, and whilst I’m the same, these numbers don’t lie.

    When I was younger, the only way to listen to an album at home was to buy it or to pirate it — and that’s if you had a modem connection which could download your 64kbps WMA, or if the Limewire share was the actual song.

    Streaming is the currently the best of both those worlds, and whilst it’s not perfect, it’s a great choice to have.
     
  3. smirking macrumors 68020

    smirking

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    Amazing. After 30 minutes nobody has thought up anything they can argue about related to this article.
     
  4. martyjmclean macrumors 6502

    martyjmclean

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    Not surprising.
    Nowadays I listen to/discover music on Spotify and only buy albums I really love on vinyl.
     
  5. QuarterSwede macrumors G3

    QuarterSwede

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    I’m blown away by 75% streaming. I never thought it would be that high. Holy smokes.
     
  6. haruhiko macrumors 601

    haruhiko

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    I have never discovered so many songs prior to my subscription to Spotify and Apple Music. I have both of them now primarily because of my HomePods, which is surprisingly a good pair of stereo speakers for the living room.
     
  7. subjonas macrumors 68000

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    These numbers are a little scary. It almost seems like one won’t be able to purchase music someday. :eek:
     
  8. Foxglove9 macrumors 68000

    Foxglove9

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    I don't do streaming music, but I can understand why people love it. it's a pain to manage so many files across many devices.
     
  9. tothemoonsands macrumors member

    tothemoonsands

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    In 2019, I have begun a commitment to owning digital media. So far this has meant digitalizing all of my CD collection, and purchasing with iTunes. Apple Music, to me, is a way to get full song previews (and to be able to access albums that I would not otherwise buy). After realizing that the Disney vault still exists digitally (i.e. currently no Aladdin / Cinderella / etc. available), I have been swiftly beefing up my iTunes Movie / TV Show collections as well. Of course keeping local downloads for everything.

    Streaming is great...until it isn't (price increases, increasingly fragmented libraries, availability changes frequently, quality control of titles, etc.)

    My fear is that in the future rights holders will only offer via streaming - essentially eliminating any option to purchase/own outright.
     
  10. dominiongamma macrumors 68000

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    If you have Spotify it will show up any device you log in to. Not sure how it’s hard
     
  11. UnusedLoginID macrumors regular

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    Interesting data:
    - Revenues from downloaded tracks and albums declined for the sixth consecutive year to $1.04 billion
    - Revenues from shipments of physical products decreased to $1.15 billion, down 23% from 2017. At estimated retail value, CDs fell 34% to $698 million, the first time revenues from CDs were less than one billion dollars since 1986
    That’s a big and quick shift in purchasing music! I too never thought streaming was so big!
    The other thing is that the music industry revenue went UP 12% from last year! These are the same people who said no way to digital downloads and streaming back in the days! I guess they’re keeping quiet now!
     
  12. now i see it macrumors 68040

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    I can always see it the other way...

    That's $7.4 Billion thrown away by music consumers. In the past, we'd buy an LP or CD and own it forever. Over the years if we were enthusiasts, we'd have hundreds of "Albums" we owned forever.

    Now with renting streaming music, after a year of listening to music, you own nothing. Zero. And after 5 years, spending all that money on monthly subscriptions, you'd still own nothing.
    Renting music via streaming may be convenient and worthwhile in the short run, but in the long run it's definitely a loser. No wonder  is so excited about it.
     
  13. iSayuSay, Feb 28, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2019

    iSayuSay macrumors 68040

    iSayuSay

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    Pay per month, not per song. This is one of the most honest tagline from Apple.

    Sure there’s certain pride for collecting physical music. At some point I did it myself. But I’ve been dissapointed way too many times. Bought a CD album only for 2 or 3 songs I like (the rest is filler garbage). There’s also dirty tricks like double dipping with enhanced, collector edition that comes much later with bonus exclusives I might love, so I'd have to buy the entire album, again? What a waste of money.

    On the other side, you can also never purchase or own your internet, netflix, utilities or cable tv, you can only rent them each month. Doing the same for music isn’t exactly the end of the world. It is already a familiar concept.

    I’d rather listen to millions songs I rent, instead of playing 1000 songs I purchased, over and over.

    As a bonus, no more double dip duplicates or garbage fillers. Any collector edition albums will also be available to stream.
     
  14. bchery21 macrumors 6502a

    bchery21

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    I guess I need to start trying this whole streaming thing? 75%?!
     
  15. iGeek2014 macrumors 68020

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    I don’t know what it’s like in the States but streaming here in the UK has made the UK Top 40 increasingly stale and identikit.

    There are songs that have hung around for far too long and records ‘broken’ despite equivalent sales being comparatively low compared to someone who achieved similar success say, 30 years ago.
     
  16. capandjudy macrumors member

    capandjudy

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    Apple Music reeked havoc with the music that I had ripped from my CD collection which took me a very long time to untangle therefore I use Spotify to stream and iTunes and the music app on my iPhone for music that has been meaningful to me over the years. The streaming services have lots of good music for sure but an album that I love could either not be there at all or be available through streaming one day and be gone the next.
     
  17. smirking, Feb 28, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2019

    smirking macrumors 68020

    smirking

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    #17
    Well, it did say it was “revenue” and not that 75% of all music is consumed through streaming.
     
  18. palmerc2 macrumors 68000

    palmerc2

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    In the pie chart there’s “Synch”

    What is that...?
     
  19. jtrauscht macrumors regular

    jtrauscht

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    I'm going to be that guy that says it's always better to buy your music (physical or download). Streaming is killing the music industry. I know too many songwriters, artists, and industry pros who have been negatively impacted by it.
     
  20. tothemoonsands macrumors member

    tothemoonsands

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    The unfortunate side effect of streaming is that artists are forced to "play to the middle" - trying to create hits that appeal to a broad base and attract plays (since an individual play is near worthless). Amazing singer-songwriters slip through the cracks in this day-and-age. It seems it is happening with movies as well now with the "Netflixication" of the film industry.
     
  21. jtrauscht macrumors regular

    jtrauscht

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    #21
    I've heard that from others, too. I've spent way too much time cultivating my music collection.
     
  22. QquegChristian macrumors 6502

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    Licensing songs to ads, television, and movies. I’m surprised that number isn’t way higher. It’s insanely expensive.
     
  23. redneckitengineer macrumors 6502

    redneckitengineer

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    I went solely to Podcasts last year. I find it works well and is completely free. Deleted my Apple Music account.
     
  24. capandjudy macrumors member

    capandjudy

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    #24
    Add to that the general devaluation of music over the past couple of decades. Music has become wallpaper for many and listening to a total album is replaced by playlists and A.I. created feeds.
     
  25. 69Mustang macrumors 604

    69Mustang

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    Isn't this the same sentiment espoused by every previous generation? Talented singer-songwriters always slip through the cracks... always have, always will. Somebody we think undeserving is going to be a star... it's always been that way. Artists make their money touring. Labels get the money, the artists get hosed. I could go on forever, but you get my point. There's really nothing new under the sun.
     

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