Apple denies iTunes sales slide | iLounge News


Apple denies iTunes sales slide

Apple has denied a report that iTunes Store sales fell by 65% in the first half of 2006. According to a recent survey by research group Forrester, the number of monthly iTunes transactions declined 58% from January to June of this year, while the average size per purchase declined by 17%, leading to a 65% overall drop in monthly iTunes revenue. Apple said the report is “simply incorrect,” but will not provide specific iTunes sales data. Forrester said it was too soon to say whether its findings showed that buyers were “reaching their saturation level for digital music.” The research firm got its figures by analyzing 2,791 U.S. iTunes debit and credit card purchases made by members of its consumer panel.

Related Stories




Thank god for analyst, they are the financial worlds equivilant to movie critics. Always complaining, never doing.

I have yet to see a good movie directed by ebert or roper.

Posted by unreal on December 13, 2006 at 10:08 AM (CST)


Perhaps if they increased the bit rate of the music sold, iTunes sales would increase.  The discount CD pricing makes it difficult for me to justify paying 10.00 an album for lower quality recordings.  Of course that would throw off the 7500/20,000 song calculation for the 30/80 GB iPods.  Something to think about.

Posted by Ian on December 13, 2006 at 11:04 AM (CST)


Even I will admit the time span of this study is inherently biased. January is always going to represent the peak of sales activity for the iTS as all of the iTunes gift cards and certificates parents and grandparents stuff into stockings are redeemed. It’s a no-brainer that, compared to January, the whole rest of the year is going to look like a major decline.

Given the seasonal nature of these sales, what is needed is a comparison between years, not a six month look that compares the middle of summer to the highest sales activity month as the initial data point.

Posted by Code Monkey on December 13, 2006 at 11:32 AM (CST)


Hmm…I smell FUD.  Now where did these kinds of stories originate from in the past? 


Posted by Gordy. on December 13, 2006 at 1:00 PM (CST)


“The research firm got its figures by analyzing 2,791 U.S. iTunes debit and credit card purchases made by members of its consumer panel”

That sounds like an accurate representation of the entire market. Hoo-boy!

Posted by ahMEmon on December 13, 2006 at 1:01 PM (CST)


Even if iTunes sales are flat, then that is cause for concern. As they are still selling millions of iPods. Sales should rise with them.

Posted by Sid32 on December 13, 2006 at 1:47 PM (CST)


“That sounds like an accurate representation of the entire market. Hoo-boy!”

In their defense, that’s more than twice the number of people needed to be within a few percent of an truly accurate figure.

It doesn’t matter if you’re talking 100, 1000, or 10000000000000000000000000000000000 humans, if you can get just 1000 *randomly* selected individuals, you are as accurate as if you’d sampled 95% of the population.

The only way you can beat the magic ~1000 participant figure is to sample 98% or more of the population.

The problem is not their sample size, it’s the period the study covers (as well as whatever methodology was used to construct the panel in the first place - if that was flawed, so are the conclusions no matter how large or small the panel).

Posted by Code Monkey on December 13, 2006 at 1:48 PM (CST)


Code Monkey is right (on both his posts). 1,500 or even 1,000 is surprisingly adequate. However the method and time span and conclusions don’t seem to reflect much professionalism. I mean, really, these people get paid quite well for what they do. Perhaps they should use a bit of insight to supplement the raw data they’re getting.

Posted by Pikemann_Urge on December 13, 2006 at 2:55 PM (CST)


Not everyone who loves the iPod likes buying at the iTunes store. Personally, I have more than enough CDs and podcasts to load on and listen to and dislike the low quality of iTunes versions of songs (I like browsing the celebrity playlists though). It is probably time for Apple to upgrade sound quality and then pull its version of the “remastered, please buy it again!” game done so well and so long by the record companies and Star Wars.

Posted by morebinky on December 13, 2006 at 3:22 PM (CST)


I agree with Pikemann_Urge and Code Monkey. If this firm used such a negligent method and released it to the press knowing the likely ramifications, then Apple could even pursue legal avenues. (not that they would).

Posted by urbanslaughter on December 13, 2006 at 3:30 PM (CST)


While I agree with Code Monkey’s logic, I am beginning to suspect that Forrester randomly chose consumers from a group of preselected consumer panel, therefore botching the statistics.

Posted by Nobody on December 13, 2006 at 10:37 PM (CST)


I’m happy to give Apple my money. In fact their OS is the only OS on the market that is worth paying for. Having said that I still would rather Solaris or Linux - ideally.

Posted by Pikemann_Urge on December 14, 2006 at 3:22 AM (CST)


I agree that a higher bit rate would get me to make my first purchase from ITMS.

I’m also wondering why the story was ignored by ipodlounge till Apple issued a denial a day later.

Posted by gear on December 14, 2006 at 5:34 AM (CST)


The story wasn’t ignored, but it was outlandish enough that we wanted Apple to have a fair opportunity to respond before lending even a vague amount of credibility to it via reposting.

Posted by Jeremy Horwitz on December 14, 2006 at 8:18 PM (CST)


The point of the origional story is exactly what Sid32 said in his comment. iTMS sales are not rising at a rate with iPod sales.

As far as iPodlounge holding back comment because they felt the story was “outlandish” and they didn’t want to give it “a vague amount of credibility”. The story was reported fairly widely in the media, I doubt thier ignoring it for two days made much differeence in the story’s credibility.
In fact I think it hurt iPodlounge’s credibility as by waiting for Apple’s reply, it made iPodlounge look like a bit of a corporate hack.

Posted by gear on December 15, 2006 at 6:54 AM (CST)

Subscribe to iLounge Weekly

Sign up for the iLounge Weekly Newsletter

iLounge is an independent resource for all things iPod, iPhone, iPad, and beyond.
iPod, iPhone, iPad, iTunes, Apple TV, Mac, and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc.
iLounge is © 2001 - 2018 iLounge, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Terms of Use | Privacy Policy