Streaming music sales in the US beat CDs for the first time

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Devindra Hardawar
March 19, 2015 8:37 PM
In this article: CDs, Rdio, RIAA, Spotify, streaming music
Streaming music sales in the US beat CDs for the first time

Sorry, Taylor Swift, but streaming music isn't going anywhere. In fact, revenues from streaming services like Spotify and Rdio overtook CD sales last year -- a first for the music industry -- according to data from the RIAA. Streaming sales hit $1.87 billion last year, a 29 percent jump from 2013, while CD revenues fell 12.7 percent reaching $1.85 billion. Naturally, digital downloads still rule the music realm -- accounting for 37 percent of the total market and $2.57 billion in sales -- but it's also worth noting they dipped a bit last year. At this point, it's not a matter of if streaming music will overtake digital downloads, it's simply a matter of when. The big problem for artists, though, is that they don't make as much from streaming services as they do from downloads or CDs (that's basically Swift's entire beef). Don't be surprised if you end up paying more for your Spotify subscription at some point soon, as those services rush to ramp up their pay outs.

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