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Survey: UK Music Buyers Prefer CD To Digital

LONDON (Hypebot) –
Most UK music fans are still happier buying a CD than downloading, according to the latest research by research agency The Leading Question in conjunction with Music Ally. Even teens say they still prefer CDs.

The survey of 1000 music fans showed that despite the growth of digital download sales:

  • 73% of music fans are still happy buying CDs rather than downloading
  • 66% of 14-18 year olds prefer CDs
  • 59% of all music fans still listen to CDs every day
  • CD burning is top of all sharing activities (23%), above bluetooth (18%), sharing single tracks (17%) and sharing albums (13%)

    Fans say they still value a physical CD much more than digital downloading and with most sales coming from online stores and supermarkets (they represented 46% of all UK CD sales in '08), even the demise of indie music stores may not cause the end of the CD.

    Digital is still the future, but rumors of the death of the CD may be premature.

    "The continued popularity of the CD should be looked upon as an opportunity. We believe that labels and online stores could and should be doing more to build on music fans’ familiarity with CDs to provide them with additional digital content and to use the CD as a bridge into the digital world,” argues survey head Tim Walker.

    The research shows that even the most digitally advanced music fans continue to buy CDs, with little evidence to show that digital music consumption is simply replacing physical consumption.

  • Those who are paying for a digital music subscription service (such as Napster or Musicstation) spend more on CDs each month than most music fans (£16.87 per month compared to £11.37).
  • Music streamers (ie those who listen to streamed music on their computers every day) also spend more on CDs (£12.17 a month) and downloads (£7.02 per month compared with a survey average of £3.81) than most music fans.

    “While we fully expect that digital will eventually replace most physical consumption, this is not a clear cut replacement cycle like the change from vinyl to CD." adds Music Ally CEO Paul Brindley. "It’s particularly encouraging that those who are listening to streamed music on their computers are actually buying more music on both CDs and downloads than the average music fan. This suggests that digital can and is being used as a way of sampling new music which users may then go on to purchase."