BuzzAngle Music issued an annual report about music consumption in 2016. The company completed its first full year of operation last year and tracked the trend of listening on streaming services as well as traditional sales. Overall music consumption increased 4.9% over 2015, from 394.5 million album project units to 413.9 million project units. Streaming consumption skyrocketed up 82.6% to 250 billion streams for the year.
The report determined that there were more streams played on any given day of 2016 than there were song downloads for the entire year. The average number of daily streams was 1.2 billion compared with 734 million song downloads during all of 2016. More than 28 million unique songs were streamed over the course of the year.
By BuzzAngle’s accounting, subscription streams generated a larger percentage of the year’s on-demand audio streaming than ad-supported platforms. Ad-supported on-demand streams rose 14.3% to 59.36 billion, while subscription on-demand streams increased 124.3% to 191.36 billion streams. BuzzAngle’s data covers only the on-demand segment of the streaming market. Thus, the ad-supported figure only covers plays from services such as Spotify’s freemium tier and not the lean-back listens from platforms like Pandora. On-demand video streams jumped up 7.5% over the previous year, clocking in with 181.31 billion total streams.
Song downloads declined 24.8%, and digital album sales fell 19.4%. Overall album sales fell 15.6% and physical album sales in particular dropped 11.7%. This year-in-review report shows a continuation of the trends we reported on over the course of 2016, with streaming growth outpacing the declines brought on by lower sales.