Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Average iTunes Listener Spending Less

iTunes logo image
Last week Apple announced that it currently has 575 million iTunes accounts, each with a credit card on file. This is significant in that it's up from 100 million just 4 years ago in 2009. What it didn't say during this announcement is that the average yearly spend is significantly down.

In September 2009 the average iTunes user spent around $74 per year. Today that figure is down to around $40, according to a recent article in Billboard. If you do the math, that still comes out to a big payday of around $23 billion a year. Just to understand, this spend is for the entire iTunes store world-wide, including movies, videos, and books, not just music.

While the declines look ominous, keep in the mind that part of the reason is that iTunes has expanded into countries that are much poorer than the countries serviced previously, like Russia, India and Latin America. Also, there's some attrition from the early adopter countries like the US, South Korea and Germany, who've moved onto streaming while some of the world is only now becoming familiar with digital downloads.

Either way, if you look at the new addition of iTunes Radio to the already impressive lineup, streaming music is now about to take the next step into the everyday consciousness of the music listener, thanks to the huge installed user base of iTunes. And it's a user base that isn't afraid to spend money, even if it's less than before.

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