Half Of Mac Users Pay To Download Music

    December 19, 2007

In the third quarter of 2007 half of all Mac users had paid to download music tracks from sites like iTunes, but just 16 percent of PC owners had done so, according to NPD’s quarterly Digital Music Monitor.

Half Of Mac Users Pay To Download Music

While Mac users were more likely to pay to download digital music than PC users, they were also more likely to buy CDs. "There’s still a cultural divide between Apple consumers and the rest of the computing world, and that’s especially apparent when it comes to the way they interact with music," according to Russ Crupnick, vice president and entertainment industry analyst, The NPD Group.

"Mac users are not only more active in digital music, they are also more likely to buy CDs, which helps debunk the myth that digital music consumers stop buying music in CD format."

Unit-volume sales share for Apple computers increased from almost 6 percent in 2006 to close to 9 percent this year (January through October), according to NPD’s consumer data panel. "Apple’s growing share in the personal computing environment — and continued success with iPod sales — is a potential harbinger for the continued growth of digital music," Crupnick said.

Overall 32 percent of Mac users purchased CDs in the third quarter of 2007, compared to 28 percent of PC users. Along with purchasing CDs and downloading music, Mac users are more likely to listen to music and watch videos on their MP3-players and computers. Thirty-four percent of Mac users had uploaded music to their MP3 players, but only 16 percent of PC users had done the same. Mac users are also more likely to listen to music files on their computers (56%) than are PC users (31%).

"While the market for digital music is growing, it’s growing slower than many would like it to — CD sales are still declining and digital music has not replaced those lost sales," Crupnick said.

"The more consumers become comfortable paying for digital music, the more chance they will evangelize to others. And at this point in the game, it’s the growing base of Apple consumers that are the industry’s low-hanging fruit when it comes to converting from physical to digital music."