2021-09-18 03:52:21
iTunes sales ‘collapsing’ DRM/economics/market data/middlemen/music/news

The Register:

The leading DRM digital download service, Apple’s iTunes, has experienced a collapse in sales revenues this year according to analyst company Forrester Research.

While the iTunes service saw healthy growth for much of the period, since January the monthly revenue has fallen by 65 per cent, with the average transaction size falling 17 per cent. The previous spring’s rebound wasn’t repeated this year.

Forrester revealed some fascinating details about iTunes purchasing habits. Some 3.2 per cent of online households (around 60 per cent of the wider population) bought at least one download, and these dabblers made on average 5.6 transactions, with the median household making just three a year. The median transaction was slightly under $3.

“iTunes sales are not cutting into CD sales,” he elaborated to us, “they’re an incremental purchase at best.

“There’s a problem here. CD sales have fallen 20 per cent over five years. The message here is not that CD sales are coming back, the ability to obtain pirated music is now so widespread the DRM looks to consumers more like a problem than a benefit.”

Forrester and Nielsen’s figures merely confirm that what the industry is losing in falling CD sales, it isn’t gaining in DRM downloads.

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