WITH audio streaming in the UK continuing to grow at an exponential rate, music body, the BPI, today reveals that, according to Official Charts Company data, the landmark of 500 million weekly streams has been breached for the first time.
Only a year ago, in July 2014, the weekly number of audio streams averaged just over the 275 million mark – contributing to a combined annual figure of 14.8 billion streams served through streaming services such as Spotify, Deezer, Rdio and Google Play, close to double the previous year’s total.
In the first half of this year, there have been 11.5 billion streams – an increase of 80 per cent on the same period in 2014, and by June just gone the weekly average had risen to 484 million streams – according to the weekly Official Charts Company survey.
However, for the chart week ending Thursday 16 July, there were 505,849,000 audio streams, including through the most recent entrants to the streaming market, Tidal Music and Apple Music.
If this level of growth continues at the current rate across the rest of the year, the number of audio streams in the UK in 2015 should comfortably exceed the 25 billion mark.
Were video streams on services such as YouTube, which are not currently reflected in the Official Charts Company data, to be added, the overall UK volume for 2015 across all platforms would most likely pass the astonishing landmark of 50 billion streams.
In the first six months of 2015 59 tracks were streamed more than ten million times in the UK, with the most streamed song, Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars’ Uptown Funk, played more than 45 million times.
The most streamed artist in the UK overall during this same six-month period, however, was Ed Sheeran, whose various songs (including Thinking Out Loud) were streamed over 170 milliontimes in total, ahead of Sam Smith, who also broke the 100 million barrier, and Irish artist Hozier.
Geoff Taylor, chief executive BPI and BRIT Awards, comments: “It’s remarkable that we now speak of billions of audio streams per month – it demonstrates vividly just how quickly streaming is being embraced by British music fans.
“As more consumers explore the enhanced experience offered by premium quality subscriptions such as Apple Music and Spotify Premium, it will help our world-leading record labels invest even more into unearthing the next generation of British talent for fans here and around the world.”
The massive growth of streaming comes as both the UK’s Official Charts and the BPI’s iconic Certified Awards have also embraced streaming.
The Official Singles Chart (as broadcast every Friday afternoon on BBC Radio 1 and unveiled on OfficialCharts.com) began counting streams last summer, while the Official Albums Chart followed suit in February this year.
In turn, the BPI’s Certified Awards for Singles started including streams last summer, followed by the Albums certifications in June this year.
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