All parts of the streaming music market grew in 2015, and total streaming revenues exceeded $2 billion for the first time ever, reports the RIAA.
Combining all categories of streaming music (subscription, ad-supported on-demand, and SoundExchange distributions), revenues grew 29% to $2.4 billion.
Paid subscription services were the biggest — and fastest growing — portion of the streaming market. The launch of new services like TIDAL and Apple Music made this one of the most watched and talked about spaces in the industry, according to the RIAA.
In 2015, revenues from paid subscriptions grew 52% to $1.2 billion. At the same time, the number of paid subscriptions grew 40% to an average of 10.8 million for the full year.
Total value of shipments in physical formats was $2 billion, down 10% versus the prior year. Vinyl LPs were up 32% by value, and at $416 million were at their highest level since 1988. Synchronization royalties were $203 million, up 7% versus the prior year.
Overall, the data for 2015 shows a music industry that continues to adopt digital distribution platforms for the majority of its revenues, says RIAA SVP Strategic Data Analysis Joshua Friedlander.
“While overall revenue levels were only up slightly, large shifts continued to occur under the surface as streaming continued to increase its market share. In 2015, the industry had the most balanced revenue mix in recent history, with just about 1/3 of revenues coming from each of the major platform categories: streaming, permanent downloads, and physical sales,” says Friedlander.