updated 10:30 am EDT, Tue August 5, 2008
iTunes controls US music
Apple's iTunes Store continues to control the US music market, a new batch of surveys suggests. Following several polls of Americans 13 and older, conducted between January and June of this year, the NPD Group says that iTunes maintained an existing lead, despite competition from major, firmly established corporations. The results are are also notable in that they reflect all forms of music sales, including not just iTunes' digital specialty but online and retail CD sales. Excluded are non-permanent options like the subscription services offered by Rhapsody and Napster.
Apple's chief competition is Wal-Mart, which has traditionally sold a high volume of CDs through its big-box retail chain, and has branched into both physical and digital online sales. The same is true of third-place contender Best Buy, but online-only vendor Amazon has risen from fifth place to fourth, based largely on its popular MP3 store. NPD also notes that while online CD sales are in decline, demand remains greater than for retail purchases.
Slipping into fifth is Target, which offers only physical sales through retail or its website.