With time comes change. It is something that can’t be avoided. In the last decade we’ve seen a huge rise in the amount of technology and services dedicated to music. The rather extensive list includes companies/services like Soundcloud, Pandora, 8tracks, Spotify, iTunes Radio, Beats Music and a multitude of others. The central idea behind all of them being free or cheap monthly access to all the music you could ever want and the only catch is that you don’t actually own any of the music. You all already knew that though.

However, what most people don’t know is just how much of an impact streaming services have on the digital sales sector. As Ed Chistman of Billboard’s biz section explains “For the first time since the advent of digital sales, the format’s declines resemble the now-routine annual percentage declines for the CD in the new millennium“.

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[Nielsen Soundscan, Billboardbiz]

Are digital downloads becoming a thing of the past? Only time will tell but we’d love to hear your thoughts on the direction of the music industry both in the comments and on twitter!