updated 07:15 am EDT, Thu July 14, 2005
Digital music sales triple
Digital music sales have soared and may be the industry's largest opportunity for growth. Reuters reports that while U.S. album sales are off 7 percent year-to-date, songs sold over the Web through in the first half of the year. According to data from Nielsen SoundScan, US internet users purchased 158 million songs in the first half of the year from online music services such as iTunes--compared with 55 million in the year-ago period. In the same period, overall U.S. album sales, including downloads, fell 2.5 percent to 301.2 million units in the first half from 309 million a year earlier, while sales of albums, excluding digital music sales, fell 7 percent. The report also said that single-song sales have increased to 6 percent of overall music sales, compared with less than 2 percent a year ago.