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Apple and Amazon Digital Music Sales Down

A couple weeks ago I wrote about the price of premium streaming music services might take a 50% cut if Apple has their way about it from $9.99 to $5. The idea was Apple estimated that people buy an average of $60 dollars worth of music a month and that a more economical service would attract more subscribers.

Apple Trying to Lower Beats Music Subscriptions

That sounded pretty good an logical but there is another driver to motivate Apple and Amazon into streaming music subscriptions. Music purchases are down.

According to the Wired both music providers are reporting lower than last year sales on music purchases.

According to Amazon, a leading culprit is something that at least sounds much more innocuous: textbooks. “As you look at our North American media growth rates, one thing that we are seeing is certainly a shift from a textbook standpoint from purchase to rental,” Amazon CFO Tom Szkutak told analysts on Thursday. More customers also are renting rather than buying digital media, Szkutak said.

Apple, the largest digital music seller in the world saw a 2014 decline in sales starting at 13% at the beginning of the year and falling another percent to 14% down. This has to do with largely the advanced state of smart phones and speed of internet data making streaming enjoyable and fast.

So here we have another shift in a huge digital music sales market that was responsible for killing the music CD to being a victim itself by faster internet speeds, better devices and user interfaces, and the consumer opting for subscription based or rented services. Hopefully Apple will get the lower pricing on the premium music services so I can get some relief from paying $10 bucks a month.