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.
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.
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.