New Music Sales Reports Send Mixed Signal
The U.S. single-track download market slipped 0.2% to 597.4 million tracks in the first half of the year according to Nielsen SoundScan. The data may suggest that the digital music singles market has reached a saturation point. Variable pricing, which has set top new releases at $1.29 rather than the more standard $.99, may have also contributed to flat sales.
On a more positive note, download sales of the more profitable album format grew by 12.7% to 42.2 million. Digital albums now make up 27.4% of all album sales. That's encouraging news, but not nearly enough to offset the continuing decline in CD sales.