Peter Kafka, writing for Recode:
Music streaming is big, and getting bigger fast. Digital downloads are falling off a cliff.
Oh, and one more familiar refrain: The music industry loves the money it’s getting from subscription services like Spotify and Apple Music, but it wants YouTube to pay them much more. […]
More than 30 million people are now paying for a subscription streaming service in the U.S., which pushed streaming revenue up 48 percent, to $2.5 billion, in the first half of the year. Streaming now accounts for 62 percent of the U.S. music business.
And that’s pushing the overall music business back up again, after a fall that started in 1999, with the ascent of Napster, and didn’t stop until a couple years ago. Retail sales were up 17 percent, to $4 billion, and wholesale shipments were up 14.6 percent, to $2.7 billion.