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2000s Music Industry Statistics

Digital Downloads

Digital Downloads took off above a 1% market share on an upward trajectory beginning in 2003, according to data from Peter Hart Research and Taylor Research & Consulting Group, as reported on in the RIAA's 2008 Consumer Profile. The popularity of legal music downloads was fueled by Apple's iTunes Music Store, which debuted in 2003 and became the #1 music retail outlet in America by 2007, surpassing Walmart. Digital downloads drove some brick and mortar record store chains out of business, including Tower Records, which went bankrupt in 2006.

In 2003 market share for digital downloads made a noticeable leap from .5 to 1.3, then saw a more significant .9 to 5.7 move two years later. Market share continued to climb the next three years, reaching 12.8 in 2008. The rise of digital downloads has paralleled the decline of the CD, which fell from 90% market share in 2005 to 77.8% market share in 2008.

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