Digital music sales up almost 20 per cent

Adele's '21' is still the biggest selling album this year

Digital music sales have grown by 17.3 per cent so far this year.

According to the figures from the British Phonographic Industry (BPI), digital downloads accounted for 34.7 per cent of all albums sold.

Despite the digital boost, total UK album sales are down to 43.6 million from 2011’s 50.3 million between January and June. Physical album sales also decreased compared to last year, dropping by almost 14 per cent compared to the first half of 2011.

Single sales have also increased, with UK music fans buying 93.6 million singles, up from 88 million during the same period last year. In 2003 around 30 million singles were sold – with fans having to pay between £2.99 and £3.99 each time for a cassette tape, vinyl or CD. Now singles cost around 79p to 99p per track.

Nine out of the top 10 biggest selling singles of the year so far were not released on CD or vinyl and sold only as downloads. Gotye’s ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ is so far the biggest selling track of the year – selling more than a million copies. ‘Call Me Maybe’ by Carly Rae Jepsen is in second place with ‘Titanium’ by David Guetta ft Sia in third.

Adele’s second album ‘21’ is still the biggest seller this year, with Emeli Sande and Lana Del Rey at two and three.