After nearly a decade in existence, iTunes has crossed 25 billion songs sold. Launched by Apple just after the turn of the millennium, the music store has gained tremendous popularity over the years. As people warmed up to the idea of digital music, they started using iTunes to get the songs they want. For a nominal fee, you can download any song you want from the online music store without hassle. To get to 25 billion songs sold is no mean achievement and Apple will surely celebrate it.
The Flag Bearer for Digital Music Sales
Since its launch, iTunes has been the bonafide flag bearer for digital music sales. According to the figures available from last year, iTunes accounts for nearly 70% of all digital music sales in the US. The number is staggering, given the fact that many similar services have started operating. In this case however, the success cannot be attributed to the Apple name only. The quality of services and the extensive catalog available in the store have played their part in making it super successful.
While it is understandable that iTunes enjoys a major share of digital music sales, it isn’t far behind in all retail sales. Taking into account each song sale in the US over the past year through any platform or medium, iTunes still makes up nearly 30% of the number. This means that iTunes is selling more than the largest retail stores in the US, including Target and Wal-Mart. Apple’s music store is now toe to toe with the music sold in physical formats.
A Major Revenue Stream for Apple
For a company which makes billions of dollars by selling smartphones and tablets along with a range of other devices and services, the money made by an online music store would be peanuts. Yet, they are some lucrative peanuts, to say the least. Apple made nearly $4 billion through iTunes in the last year alone. That represents an increase in revenue of over 20% from the previous year. The striking fact remains that Apple’s revenue is made up of only a 30% share of the sales!
The money will likely keep flowing in for iTunes and Apple in the near future as well. Eddy Cue, the Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services at Apple, the average number of song downloads per minute through iTunes is currently 15,000. That means that the store sells, on average, 21 million songs every day. That is double the number of songs iTunes managed to sell in its first five months!
More Content, Constant Additions
Through the years, iTunes has expanded its catalog of music available to the users. Currently, there are over 26 million songs in the music store. You can also find a wide collection of movies, games, apps, TV shows, books and magazines in the digital format. With its constantly expanding catalog, iTunes is here to stay! Interestingly the 25 billionth song bought through iTunes is Chase Buch’s “Monkey Drums (Goksel Vancin Remix)”, downloaded by Phillip Lupke who received a €10,000 iTunes Gift Card!