A total of 270.6 mln physical albums were sold in the first half of 2006 in the US, representing a drop of 12 mln units from 2005 first half total of 282.6 mln, according to Nielsen SoundScan. Digital albums improved by 8.2 mln units, with 14.7 mln units sold versus just 6.4 mln units in the first half of 2005. Digital tracks gained by 122 mln units; 281 mln tracks were sold in the first six months of the year versus 158 mln in the same period 2004. Sales of digital albums soared 126% during the first half of 2006, while digital tracks rose 77%. Physical album sales continued to decline in the US during the first six months of 2006, down 4.2%.