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Millennials opt for digital audio, phone connections in cars

Millennials Opt For Digital Listening

Millennials Opt For Digital Listening

We covered the early results from Music Biz Consumer Insights and LOOP’s latest study of in-car listening, but the final report offers some more detail into the breakdown of technology choices and listener ages.

For in-car listening, 75% of respondents said they listen to AM/FM radio. CD listening came in a distant second with 38%, while digital music files had 18% and streaming Internet radio had 15%. Podcasts secured just 6%.

Age has proven to be distinguishing factor for many music trends, and the millennial respondents were more likely to consume digital sources in their cars. In the 20-24 age bracket, 29% listen to digital music files and 26% listen to streaming Internet radio. For the 25-34 group, those rates are 28% and 29%, respectively, while teens aged 15-19 posted 23% and 22%. Digital music files were somewhat common for the 35-44 group (26%), but that was the only time digital listening surpassed 20% for the demographics older than 35.

Respondents showed an interesting trend in terms of device ownership. Sixty percent had an in-car CD player, but just 31% reported owning an in-car phone audio connection, such as a wire aux cable or a wireless option. As we’ve seen with many mobile and digital technologies, the milliennial age groups are most likely to own the phone connectors; 43% of the 20-24 age group and 44% of 25-34 said they owned one. CD player ownership was most common for the 25-34 group and the older ones. Ages 15-19 had just 38% CD player ownership and the 20-24 group reported 41% ownership.

In-Car Device Ownership

In-Car Device Ownership

Even though CD players were more common, they aren’t as regularly used. Just 23% said they use their in-car CD player daily, compared with 48% daily using their phone audio connection.

The study also looked at adoption of Sirius XM’s satellite radio. Seventeen percent of all respondents said their cars could stream Sirius XM, although that did not account for whether the car owner had a subscription. Among subscribers, 76% listen to the satellite radio platform in cars at least once a week and 54% listen daily.

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