According to The NPD Group, the number of Internet users paying for digital music increased by just over 8 mln in 2008 to 36 mln Internet users. Purchases of online digital music downloads increased by 29% since 2007; they now account for 33% of all music tracks. There were nearly 17 mln fewer CD buyers in 2008 compared to 2007. The decline in music purchasing was led by a 19% drop in CD sales. Only 58% of Internet users reported purchasing CDs or digital music downloads 2007, versus 65% in 2007.
Awareness and usage of Pandora, a leading online radio station, doubled YTY to 18% of Internet users; one-third of those who were aware of Pandora report using the service. Share of consumers claiming to listen to music on social networks climbed from 15% in Q4 2007 to 19% in Q4 2008. Nearly half of US teens are engaging with music on social networks, which is an increase from 37% a year ago; among college-age Internet users, the share increased from 30% in 2007 to 41% in 2008.