Blog Post

Global Music Sales Flat on Ringtone Sales

The record labels are claiming global music sales fell again in 2004 by ignoring sales from digital downloads or for music ringtones. Which is stupid, because those things are music and do feed royalties back to the copyright owners. The claimed decline in sales was once again blamed on music piracy rather than abnormally high prices and the end of the update cycle (which involved people buying music they already owned on tapes or vinyl on the new technology – CD). Here’s a quote I hope will change soon: “Albums from Usher, Norah Jones, Eminem and Green Day were among the year’s best sellers, helping the four music majors — Vivendi’s Universal Music, Sony BMG, EMI Group and Warner Music — to dominate the market with only two of the top 50 albums from independent record companies”. Hopefully with new distribution methods offered by the internet and mobile networks this will change…Record labels are already concerned over mobile operators considering themselves to be distributors of music…(from Ringtonia)

On this topic, here’s a neat article comparing predictions from Jupiter Research and Juniper Research on the future of the ringtone industry, one is optimistic and the other decidedly not so…

Finally, big radio stations are looking to ringtones to maintain their success. Australia’s biggest radio broadcaster, Austereo Group, is selling polyphonic ringtones to match the “Today FM’s Hot 30 Countdown”. Today FM and Triple M were the biggest FM stations in Australia, basically competing only with each other, until DMG Radio Australia launched Nova, which successfully took marketshare. Apparently DMG is looking to launch another three stations, so Austereo is looking for ways to maintain marketshare and increase its threatened profits – ringtones is something very obvious that fits the bill…but its really something all radio stations should offer anyway. Austereo is also getting into Podcasting…(from