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Nielsen-US-Music-Industry-Sales-Trends-in-H12016-Jul2016The number of audio streams has surpassed the number of video streams for the first time in the US music industry, says a Nielsen report [download page]. Audio streams jumped to 113.6 billion in the first half of the year, almost double the count from the year-earlier period. Video streams also grew, but by a relatively smaller 28.6% year-over-year, to 95.3 billion.

The result is continued growth in streaming consumption, as total on-demand music streams rose by 58.7% to 208.9 billion. Total digital music consumption – which includes digital albums, track equivalent albums, and streaming equivalent albums – increased by 14.8% to 223.5 million.

Other trends remained fairly steady from the full-year 2015 report. Overall album consumption, which includes track and streaming equivalent albums, grew by 8.9%, a more modest increase than in 2015 (15.2%).

Total album sales continued to decline, by 13.6% overall. LP/vinyl sales remained the sole bright spot, with sales growth in the double-digits. However, LP/vinyl represents a fractional proportion of overall album sales, at around 6%.

Physical album sales were again down at all store types save for non-traditional stores, which include the internet, venues, direct-to-consumer and other retail outlets other than chains, independents, and mass merchants.

Other highlights from the report follow.

  • Drake’s “Views” was the top album of the first half of the year. Though it trailed Adele’s “25” in album sales, it had almost 10 times more on-demand audio streams.
  • The song “My House” from Flo Rida was the top digital song, with almost 2 million in sales. It was followed by Lukas Graham’s “7 Years,” which enjoyed 1.83 million sales.
  • “One Dance” from Drake, featuring Wizkid & Kyla, was the top song by digital consumption, featuring more than 1.4 million sales and more than 286 million audio streams.
  • The most streamed song of the first half was “Work,” from Rihanna featuring Drake. It saw more than half a billion (511.5 million) audio and video on-demand streams.
  • “One Dance” from Drake, featuring Wizkid & Kyla, had the most audio streams (286.4 million), while “Panda,” from Desiigner, had the most video streams (269.4 million).
  • The top genre overall by total album consumption was rock, though R&B/Hip-Hop led in digital tracks and on-demand streams.

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