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More Music Lovers in Australia Choose Streaming

Downloading in decline as listeners Down Under tune to other options

October 3, 2016 | Media & Entertainment

Music represents the most popular type of media content consumed by internet users in Australia. But thanks to technological changes, more of those users are turning to streaming options when seeking out songs than using more permanent methods.

Consumers in Australia Who Purchase Music Digitally vs. Stream Music/Radio, March 2012 & March 2016 (% of population)

A study by Roy Morgan Research, which examined methods of digital music consumption in Australia between 2012 and 2016, highlights the shifting preferences of the country’s consumers. It found 19.7% of consumers ages 14 and older had streamed music in an average four-week period between April 2015 and March 2016, up 91% from the 10.3% share seen between April 2011 and March 2012. Likewise, 9.6% had listened to streamed radio in the most recent timeframe, vs. 6.3% in the earlier period. Conversely, the percentage of consumers who had bought music downloads dropped nearly 25% between the two periods, falling to just 4.6% in the 12 months to March 2016.

The same trends were evident in July 2015 research by EY Sweeney into the ways internet users in Australia purchased and listened to music of any kind. Although listening to the radio was still the most popular way to consume music, streaming behavior like “watching YouTube,” came in as the second most popular method, topping activities like buying physical CDs and buying tracks or albums digitally. Using a subscription streaming services was further down the list, mentioned by 18% of total respondents.

Although streaming music is far from a universal behavior in Australia, longer-term trends suggest it could account for a much larger share of consumers’ music time in the years to come.

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