Streaming now 85% of U.S. recorded music revenue: RIAA

Streaming has grown from 80% to 85% of all recorded music revenue in the U.S., according to the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) in its mid-year 2020 report. (See it HERE.) The 5% growth is apples to oranges; the full year report of 2019 showed 80% streaming revenue. But a persistent trendline indicates that the full-year 2020 report (out in March 2021) will show continued growth of streaming, and is likely to be above 85% of all revenue.

In dollars, the 85% of revenue for the six month period totals $4.8-billion. That compares to previous 1H dollar totals of $4.3B in 1H 2019, and $3.4B in 1H 2018.

Other revenue categories have been withering on the vine for years, and now are nearing flatline. Physical sales were just 7% or revenue, and digital downloads were 6%.

Within streaming types, paid subscription dominated, as in previous reports. For 1H 2020, paid streaming subscription revenue totaled $3.4B. By comparison, ad-supported streaming took in approximately $550-million.

Total recorded music revenue was $5.7B in the first half, implying a full-year number of $11B or higher. If so, it would continue an upward recovery trend for the record industry.


Brad Hill